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Erik ten Hag launches passionate defence of Man Utd job

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has urged his critics to “see my record” after coming in for recent criticism.

The Dutchman oversaw major strides during his first season in charge at Old Trafford, notably winning the Carabao Cup and leading United to a third-place Premier League finish.

But things have not been as rosy this campaign. The Red Devils have already lost ten games across all competitions, sit seventh in the Premier League and are on the verge of an exit from the Champions League at the group stage.

Ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League clash with Chelsea, United banned four journalists from attending Ten Hag’s pre-match press conference after not being consulted about reports of disharmony in the dressing room.

During that press conference, Ten Hag defended his record in charge and insisted the club are still moving forward.

“There will be always tough times in every journey. We are in the right direction,” Ten Hag said. “I know we will get there where we want to be. Because – see my record.

“Everywhere where I was, every season, I got my targets, so if we stick together, stick to the plan and the strategy, we will get where we want to be.”

Erik ten Hag, Alejandro Garnacho

Ten Hag’s United lost at Newcastle on Saturday / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/GettyImages

Ten Hag was then asked for a timeframe on when United can be expected to be at the level he wants, but he was reluctant to put forward a concrete answer.

“First of all, I can’t say in this club we are waiting for two, three years,” he replied.

“This club the aim is, the demand is and the standards should be that you win every game, so we go in every game with the aim.

“I demand of my team, my players to win every game. Doesn’t matter who the opponent is, and I will stick to that. That brought us last year very far.

“We were third in the league, in the FA Cup final – we could even have won this – and we won the Carabao Cup.

“That mentality I don’t want to change this because that will be a drop-off in culture.

“That means, yeah, there is a high standard on me, and me together with the team, so it’s also high standards on the players, and I don’t make compromises on that.

“I never had the idea they [the players] don’t [back me] because I know they would have dropped me against Fulham or Burnley if it was the other situation. If the situation was not right, if the environment was not right, and that’s not the case.”


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