Manchester United FC has lost four of their seven matches of the 2023/24 English Premier League season. The best time for Erik Ten Hag to review the reasons for these poor results is now! They took the third position last season which was the first year of his reign at the club.Embed from Getty Images
The Team Erik Ten Hag built
They were active during the past two transfer windows, bringing Mason Mount, Andre Onana, Rasmus Hojlund, and Sofyan Amrabat. In his first season, he brought Rafael Varane, Casemiro, Lisandro Martinez, and Antony to his team. Marcus Rashford, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Jordan Sancho have both had disciplinary issues with Ten Hag.
Ronaldo left early, and Rashford’s issue was quickly resolved. Sancho remains isolated from the squad. He dropped Henry Maguire as substantive captain, replacing him with Bruno Fernandes. Overall, the team is not short of quality personnel in any aspect. The profile and pedigree of his personnel include several title winners in European and global football titles.
They have not been able to consolidate on their last year’s performance as results stand. Losing four from seven matches is alarming for a perennial title contender such as Manchester United FC, and Erik Ten Hag needs to stop this downslide before it turns into a catastrophe.
The team could be suffering from issues outside the field. It could be his personal relationship and communication style with his players. De Gea was allowed to go despite being amongst the best safest hands last season and removing Harry Maguire as captain, can come with negative repercussions to team cohesion. Jadon Sancho’s statement after being dropped suggests some disconcerting issues that need to be resolved for the good of the team and Ten Hag’s continued stay as coach.Embed from Getty Images
Ten Hag’s replacement for David de Gea has not worked and the lack of a truly accomplished striker remains an issue. Andre Onana, the ball-playing goalkeeper with extraordinary attributes of a holding midfielder has been very good with his legs rather than his hands.
Onana, has initiated more attacking passes than making saves in seven matches. He has conceded more than de Gea would do statistically within the same period. His attacking attributes have not helped the club so far.
His defence and strike force have wobbled so far, conceding eleven goals and scoring just seven. The fans booed Erik Ten Hag and his players after their one-nil home loss to Crystal Palace FC on the 30th September. It was their second consecutive home loss, after their 1-3 loss to Brighton Hove Albion on the 16th of September. It statistically equalled their worst record since 1989.
Sports pundit, Paul Merson, alluded to Ten Hag’s shambolic team after Manchester United’s loss to Crystal Palace. We expect that he will instantly resolve these issues and redeem his team.
They’d play against Galatasaray on 3rd October in the UEFA Champions League group match 2 and with Brentford FC on 7th October. Victory in these home matches would be an opportunity to win their fans back!