A coach for Manchester United for two million euros
The Dutchman and Fabrizio Romano are confident that ten Hague is discussing the final details with Manchester United’s management on the eve of signing his contract. The departure fee owed to Ajax, around 2 million euros, does not scare the English. That’s what they give Paul Pogba for a month’s stay at MJ, with whom the Frenchman is out of the way. But ten Hague understands the delicacy of the situation. He wants to know clearly what functions and opportunities Rangnick’s adviser will have (Ralf is said to support the Dutchman’s candidacy).
Another important point on the way to an agreement is the existence of veto power in the formation of the roster. At Ajax, where Overmars and Van der Sar were in charge, Ten Hag is used to teamwork. Erik is consulted on both sales and purchases. The system at MJ is different, and no one is adequately willing to come in with clipped credentials. It’s also important for the new mentor to understand the goals for the season so that unrealistic expectations don’t send him to retirement, like Moyes did. There are many nuances, because the future of one of the major clubs in the world is at stake.
“Manchester United have missed having the right coaching hand. And since Sulscher was a slave mentor, the next one should prove to be different. Remember how Ronaldo was signed through the hands of Ferguson and club legends, not at the Norwegian’s personal request. Ten Hague doesn’t want to be a ready-made scapegoat, because purely coaching tasks have accumulated at MJ. That’s what I want to talk about in more detail, because even if they choose another coach, the conversation itself will not lose relevance.
Make Ronaldo the new Tadic
Don’t look for humiliation for the soccer legend in this subheading. Of course, Ronaldo is a much higher class than the productive and aged Serbian. But winger Dusan found himself at Ajax, first as a false forward and then as a tackler for Allaire. Ronaldo has failed to establish himself at MJ without his performance or teamwork suffering. Ten Hague will likely need the Portuguese to work alongside the new forward.
Choose a free kick striker
Just as nations have a mentality, soccer clubs have a style. “Real Madrid was rational and counterattacking long before Kroos and Modric were born. “Barcelona has been the way it was meant to be a long time ago. And Manchester United or Juventus are at their best when they understand their nature. Rooney, Law, Van Persie, Andy Cole and van Nistelrooy played alongside incredibly productive wingers. They included Giggs, Best or Ronaldo from the past. There were also guys like Charlton or Cantona. Bruno Fernandes is also a contender for a similar role and will sign an improved contract. But the Portuguese need a center of gravity in the penalty area. They’re calling for youngsters from Brugge or PSV, they’ve recalled Abraham. Better yet, they should sign Harry Kane, he could do well.
Parting with Harry Maguire
It’s unlikely ten Hague has the courage and political weight. But as long as Maguire is at the core of MJ, it’s hard for them, along with Lindelöf or Varan, to defend De Hea better than they have this season. MJ is tenth in the APL in conceded goals, and twelfth in the quality of opponents’ chances. Defensively, Sulsher and Rangnick’s team play like a mid-table side like Aston Villa or Burnley. Understandably, the English are defending their own national team player Maguire. But Harry fits the structure of Southgate’s game and doesn’t fit MJ’s needs. If he were to take on Vidic’s role, Schkrinjar would be a much better fit alongside Varan. Ten Hague won’t be allowed to sell Maguire, because that would be admitting an expensive mistake. But if he can sign a strong defender to go along with France’s Rafa, De Gea will have hope of staying fit by the summer of 2023.
Finding the perfect wrecker
Roy Keane and Michael Carrick helped Ferguson. Now there is no man who can insure Bruno Fernandes, Sancho and Ronaldo the way Casemiro or Busquets did at their clubs in their best seasons. The Catalan was remembered for a reason; in today’s world, a supporting player must “cut off” opposing players with stinging passes. It’s difficult to find a suitable candidate on the market, but one can take a closer look at Rice. Over the past year, he’s ranked among the top-5 players in pass accuracy and interceptions. That’s not to say Declan is an ideal candidate, the English tend to overestimate their players. But players from the school of West Ham are often happy in richer clubs – Rio Ferdinand, Lampard, Joe Cole, Terry or just Carrick. Rumors of another English midfielder, Calvin Phillips, transferring to MJ have also intensified. It’s hard to say if they have enough class, but the reinforcements have been awaited.
Convert the work of the wings
Manchester United needs a lateral on the edge of defense who can pass like Alexander-Arnold in Lisbon. All big clubs are not without this kind of playmaking intelligence. Guardiola has Walker and Cancelo for that. And Zinchenko is a retrained attacking midfielder, he has game thinking skills. At Bayern we can see what Davis can do when his heart is not troubled after coronavirus. Van Bissaki has all the qualities to take the ball, but he and Shaw don’t have the attacking skills that Andrew Robertson does. Chillwell and James, when on top form, attack better than their Manchester United counterparts. Ten Hague understands the value of the flanks, they need to be rebuilt.
Revisit attacking actions.
Manchester United are creating chances, but they only have 40 goals in the APL, while Liverpool have as many as 77. It will be difficult to fit Bruno Fernandes, Sancho and Ronaldo into a scheme with a new selfish center forward. In that case, the pressing will suffer, which is not impressive even without the newcomer. The English club will not be able to play like Bayern, with Gnabry, Sane, Muller and Lewandowski on the pitch. Not unless they reconsider the work of those who help the defense. Bruno Fernandes, Sancho and Kane (if he arrives) need to plow like Modric, Bale and Benzema from the past so Ronaldo can remain himself and be useful as a “wandering forward” with a pull back on the left wing.
The dilemma of star players without positions that are beneficial to their teams is not unique to MJ. The hapless Neymar and the lost Messi are the first to come to mind. But unless coaching billets emerge, updating Manchester United’s standards at two goals, and increasing possession by diluting the sheer number of shots on goal – even Ronaldo hasn’t helped rise above Tottenham on his favorite parameter – then ten Hague won’t be the club’s savior, but its next victim. Or Pochettino, or Zidane, or whoever.