Erik ten Hag casts doubt on major overhaul of Man United squad
'This team was second in the Premier League'
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has cast doubt over a major overhaul of the squad in the summer after pointing out that they were 'good enough' to finish second in the 2020/21 season.
United had been expected to embark on a significant revamp of their squad this summer, with several players - including Paul Pogba and Edinson Cavani - expected to leave Old Trafford.
However, speaking in his first interview as the club's new boss, Ten Hag highlighted the 'potential' in a team that finished second in the top-flight last campaign - despite the fact they have recorded their lowest points tally of the Premier League era in a bitterly disappointing 2021/22 season.
Ten Hag keen to play 'dominant and dictating football'
The Dutchman, who arrives at Old Trafford on a three-year deal with an option for a fourth, insisted that his ambition at United is to play 'dominant and dictating football' and to bring entertainment back to the supporters.
Asked what he sees in the future for United, Ten Hag said: "It's first: accept the current situation but also know one year ago, this club, this team was second in the Premier League.
"There's potential and now it's up to us to get that out. It's a process, it will take time but I'm convinced we will come to that point where we get success. We have to work hard and it has to be based on the right philosophy and strategy."
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) May 23, 2022
United, who announced the appointments of Mitchell van der Gaag and Steve McClaren as Ten Hag's assistants on Monday morning, finished 13 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, and 35 behind champions and rivals Manchester City.
The 52-year-old Ten Hag admitted that it would be a 'big challenge' to turn around the club's fortunes and that 'good is not good enough'.
"We want to make the fans proud," he added. "Second, of course we are in this moment, the current situation is obviously not that good.
"It's a big challenge. I want to build and construct a team who are battling for each other, who are unified and who will get results.
"Also we are playing in the Theatre of Dreams. We want to entertain. But in the end, the intention is to play fantastic football. If we can't play fantastic football, we still have to win.
"I have high expectations from myself and that is also what I demand from my squad. They have to co-operate together and they have to give every day their best. And I would say, for me, good is not good enough. We have to do better."
United to start pre-season at end of June
Ten Hag confirmed that United will begin their pre-season on June 27, with the new Premier League campaign starting on the weekend of August 6, 2022.
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