With back-to-back wins over Burnley and Crystal Palace, Erik ten Hag seems to have somewhat steadied the ship at Manchester United amid dealing with several off-the-pitch issues.
Ever since Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure, the lack of control over the dressing room has been one of the big reasons behind the departure of many of his successors. Accordingly, ever since he arrived at Old Trafford, Erik ten Hag has been keen to stamp his authority on the United squad.
From dropping superstar Cristiano Ronaldo to taking away the captain’s armband from Harry Maguire, Ten Hag has seldom shown reluctance to make bold decisions. And this isn’t something he picked up at United in his aim to follow Ferguson’s footsteps. He’s always been like this.
In an exclusive interview with The Athletic, Blind, who played at United under Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho and also shined under Ten Hag in Amsterdam, gave an insight into the former Ajax coach’s management style: “We became like a machine, better and better. In time, he can do that for United. He’s a great manager, great personality. He’s direct, honest, and tells you what he sees. He’s not afraid to make big decisions. If you don’t like it, you can go another way because his train goes on.”
Jadon Sancho is the latest player to get a taste of what it’s like to go against the direction of Ten Hag’s train, as he finds himself training away from the first team at Carrington after failing to talk things about with the boss. The pair disagreed over the reason behind his absence against Arsenal.
However, to continue keeping the same tight hold of the reins at Old Trafford, the Dutchman needs to ensure his side keeps delivering encouraging results. At the end of the day, at a club like United, everything is only ever dictated by the full-time score.