‘Can reach high peaks, there is that realization’

‘Can reach high peaks, there is that realization’

NOS Soccer

Ten Hag delivers United first prize since 2017: ‘This means something’

Winning the League Cup is not only the end of a nearly six-year prize drought at Manchester United, manager Erik ten Hag hopes above all that it is an incentive to press on.

“This should be an inspiration for more,” Ten Hag told Viaplay after the win over Newcastle United (2-0) in the final. “It gives confidence for this season and the future. Because I have, if all goes well, a number of years to build.”

After the final, Erik ten Hag took a picture with legendary former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson with the League Cup in his hands.

For Wout Weghorst, the League Cup marked the first top prize of his career. And he doesn’t feel it will be the last. “You do feel that something really special is going on,” he said.

“We are on the right track and they realize that we can reach high peaks,” Ten Hag continued. “This group can also form to a match. If it can be beautiful, they can play great soccer, like last week against Barcelona. Today was more of a fighting game with high intensity against a physically strong opponent.”

Weghorst wins at Wembley: ‘Special feeling, not experienced like this before’

The start of the season was still difficult, but soon sentiment turned positive.

PSV coach Ruud van Nistelrooij is closely following his old club’s developments. He, too, is impressed with Ten Hag’s performance. “Erik has done extremely well and built it up in a fantastic way. You see that reflected in the game and the results. It is a fine piece of craftsmanship.”

Three fronts

Manchester United is still active on three other fronts. In both the FA Cup and the Europa League, United is in the eighth final. In the Premier League, although it has eight fewer points than leaders Arsenal, a return to the Champions League seems imminent with a solid top-four finish.

“For the club, this means a lot after that prize drought,” noted Ten Hag, who impressed with his team with a win over FC Barcelona on Thursday.

Kayleigh Williams