The next Manchester United manager, Erik ten Hag, has some big decisions to make at Old Trafford.
You can’t look at the current squad without listing a number of problems, however, more could surface when the Dutchman begins to implement his style of football on the players.
As a fan disgusted by what I have been subject to this season, with certain players throwing the towel in far too early, I think the club needs to trust Ten Hag’s judgment and realise that he will soon become the most important figure at the club.
Without that understanding, he will come short like previous managers.
United have a host of players who are out of contract at the end of the season, including Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard, though there are others who may struggle to adapt to Ten Hag’s football.
Ten Hag, like Pep Guardiola at Manchester City, believes his goalkeeper is an 11th outfield player. They must have ball-playing characteristics to fit into their teams. Remember how Guardiola didn’t see Joe Hart as part of his long-term plans?
Well, something similar could happen at United but it might take one season to come to that.
According to ESPN, Ten Hag is concerned about David de Gea’s suitability for his system given the integral role the keeper plays in building play and passing out from the back.
This is one of De Gea’s weak points and we’ve seen him struggle with the ball at his feet for years. On top that, he doesn’t come off his line anywhere near enough to play in Ten Hag’s system.
Of course, we are also talking about United’s best player this season – and incredible shot stopper, but one who has been left behind in the modern game.
Despite the question marks over how well suited De Gea is for playing possession football and resisting opposition’s pressing, Ten Hag does not see it as being so big of an issue that it needs addressing this summer.
It could easily happen next year unless De Gea gets a new contract – which, at this point, would be a questionable decision from the club.