Why it is Only the Beginning For Ten Hag’s Man Utd
Ten Hag’s Man Utd-Since November, Manchest
er United have not lost a game and have moved within one point of Manchester City – an incredible turnaround from when Erik Ten Hag was appointed last year.
The Dutchman, a former Ajax player who had the benefit of Pep Guardiola’s guidance at Bayern Munich, arrived at United with an unwavering philosophy and high standards. It appears this combination will reap rewards in the future.
1. They’re building a team for the future
Ten Hag’s Man Utd have won the Carabao Cup and are considered genuine Premier League title contenders this season. That feat surpasses even Ten Hag’s predecessors Jose Mourinho and David Moyes – and it only marks the beginning for Ten Hag and Man Utd.
His approach to team-building is largely tactical, and this summer’s additions have revolutionized United’s gameplan. Casemiro has strengthened United’s midfield while Lisandro Martinez, Antony and Diogo Dalot have given them greater versatility.
Wan-Bissaka and Weghorst have also been key members of United’s lineup this season, with the latter appearing in all 12 matches. He had been on the fringes before Ten Hag took over but has flourished under his manager.
2. They’re making progress
Ten Hag’s players’ perseverance and discipline have enabled him to transform United into the team he had envisaged when he took charge. They have become more cohesive as a unit, playing their football in a manner not seen since Sir Alex Ferguson retired.
There is a sense that they are building for the future, one capable of challenging for titles in both England and Europe. Although it is still early days for the Dutchman, his team’s progress thus far has been encouraging.
There are a few areas which need improvement, such as central midfield and the attack. It will be essential for them to utilize this summer’s transfer window fully and add top talent to their ranks.
3. They’re a more cohesive unit
The Dutchman has brought discipline back into his team, something which had been lacking since Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure. Additionally, he made it clear that players must respect his authority.
United’s players have grown closer together due to this. They are actively competing against one another, leading them to be physically more assertive.
Furthermore, Ten Hag’s side are much tighter defensively than they were last season as they have improved at counter-pressing opponents. Although not perfect in this area, Ten Hag’s men have made great progress.
They’ve started to see better results as a result, winning 20 games across all competitions this season compared to the 13 they managed last year.
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4. They’re a more technical outfit
One of the key ingredients in United’s success under ten Hag has been their possession strategy. They are a more technical team who uses possession as both an offensive and defensive weapon.
Under the leadership of football director John Murtough and head of recruitment Steve Brown, an innovative mentality has been fostered. This system relies on a central database that compiles data from 140 scouts around the world who then recommend players for committee meetings.
Ten Hag then reviews these recommendations and has the final say, with a power of veto over potential signings. But even then, some within the club hierarchy recognize that this isn’t enough.
5. They’re a more cohesive unit
Ten Hag’s success has been due to his ability to foster a culture within the dressing room that motivates all players. This teamwork ethic doesn’t rely on individual brilliance but instead emphasizes working as one unit to win games.
United have become more cohesive than they’ve been for some time. Their discipline has been reinvigorated, and they are defending and attacking as one unit with a shared purpose.
Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba have shown they can play this way, which is a major step forward for United as they aim to get back on track in the Premier League. Additionally, United’s attacking threat has grown as they move the ball more quickly and effectively from defence.
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