United growing under ‘Vintage Ferguson’ Ten Hag: ‘Biggest win of season’

United growing under ‘Vintage Ferguson’ Ten Hag: ‘Biggest win of season’

NOS Football

Ten Hag: ‘If you beat Barcelona, you can beat anyone’

Erik ten Hag’s success story at Manchester United continued Thursday night with the 2-1 win over Barcelona and the placement for the Europa League’s eighth finals. Ten Hag spoke of his “biggest win of the season.”

In the hunt for top prizes, Manchester United need not fear anyone anymore, according to the coach. “We win from Barcelona and that gives a lot of extra self-confidence,” he said. “Whoever wins from this club can win from anyone.”

With the placement for the eighth finals, Manchester United continues to compete on four fronts: the Europa League, the FA Cup, the Premier League and the League Cup. On Sunday, United can take their first prize since 2017 in the League Cup final against Newcastle United at Wembley.

Erik ten Hag

Ten Hag is garnering praise for his approach. “It has taken ten years to get to this point,” said former United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel at BBC Radio 5 live. “Whether they win all the awards or not, everyone sees the progression. I sit here and think, wow, we have the right man. It’s like having a vintage version of Sir Alex Ferguson on the bench.”

“The Dutchman has single-handedly tilted the club’s situation,” the BBC wrote. “United seemed to be at a dead end a year ago, but that is completely different now, Although he will need an award to underline that United really are on the right track.”

“Very impressive,” Gary Lineker called United’s transformation under Ten Hag. The coach himself explained, “You need a strategy to build and you need results to get a strong belief.”

Golden substitutions

Not for the first time this season, the coach’s substitutions worked out well. He brought in Antony for Wout Weghorst after halftime, and the Brazilian ex-Ajac player scored the winning goal. It was the nineteenth time a substitute has scored for United in all competitions this season.

“All the substitutes, not only in this game but in many games, did a great job,” the coach said. “They come into the team and bring energy and quality and a different dynamic. Everyone has a strong belief in this team.”

“Antony is brave and knows no fear,” Ten Hag praised the match-winner. “He brought what we needed, runs, dribbles and a goal.”

Sky Sports was also impressed. “Weghorst started in all 11 games since his arrival and is clearly a favorite of the coach,” the English medium stated in an analysis. “But Ten Hag is ruthless enough to recognize when something is not working. His change midway through helped his team turn it around.”

Kayleigh Williams