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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Ajax’s Erik Ten Hag to become Manchester United next manager

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Manchester United have reportedly found its next manager in Ajax’s Erik ten Hag. According to ESPN, the Premier League giants are finalizing a deal to appoint the Dutch manager ahead of next season. The club has been searching for a replacement for Ole Gunnar Solskjær since dismissing the club legend in November and appointing Ralf Rangnick as interim manager.

Ten Hag has long been considered one of the favourites to land the job along with PSG and former Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Read Also: Manchester United Announce Ralf Rangnick as New Interim Manager

ESPN reported that multiple contractual factors, including a £1.7 million compensation fee for Ajax Hag as opposed to £15 million for Pochettino at PSG, contributed to the decision.

A former FC Twente defender, Ten Hag previously served as manager at Go Ahead Eagles, Bayern Munich II and Utrecht before arriving at Ajax in 2017. Ten Hag led the Dutch giants to Eredivisie titles in 2018–19 and 2020–21.

In 2018–19, he also led Ajax on its first trip to the Champions League semifinal since 1997 with statement wins over defending champion Real Madrid and Juventus, before blowing a second-leg semifinal lead to Spurs.

In his career at Ajax, ten Hag has recorded an impressive 74% win percentage with 154 wins in 208 games as manager. The manager is known for his aggressive pressing tactics and is widely considered one of the rising managerial stars in world soccer.

Manchester United lost 1-0 to Everton at Goodison Park despite Everton going into the game just a point above the relegation zone.

It has harmed United’s chances of finishing in the top four and securing Champions League qualification.

Ralf Rangnick said Manchester United “do not deserve” to play in the Champions League next season if they perform how they did against Everton for the rest of the season.

“If we play like we did here we just don’t deserve it,” said Rangnick.

“The players themselves should be eager to play international football, if possible Champions League. In order to qualify for Europe you have to be able to score in 95 minutes in a game like this.”

Everton came into the match following a disappointing 3-2 defeat by relegation rivals Burnley, who sit just one place below them in the table.

Rangnick bemoaned his side’s lack of ability to score against Everton, who he believed were low on confidence following that loss to Burnley.

“With all respect to Everton – because they have a good team – but if you don’t score against a team who conceded three goals against Burnley, you cannot expect to get anything out of it,” he added.

“The first 25 minutes we were in full control of the game. We didn’t even in those 25 minutes take enough advantage out of that dominating period.

“You could literally feel that Everton were crumbling after that result against Burnley. They were quite logically not full of confidence but we didn’t take advantage of that.”

Man United have won just eight of the 17 Premier League games Rangnick has overseen – the lowest win percentage (47%) of any manager for the club in the competition.

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