Erik ten Hag’s appointment at Manchester United has been met by excitement from the supporters, with the 53-year-old seen as a progressive appointment.
Ten Hag is a manager with an upwards trajectory, with many feeling that previous appointments have arrived at the club with less immediate success in their sails.
The former Ajax boss has already made his opening statements as the new man in charge at Old Trafford and now, John Murtough, the club’s football director, has opened up on why United decided to go with Ten Hag.
“He showed passion, energy and enthusiasm for the challenge,” Murtough said in a Fans Forum meeting, according to the official Manchester United website.
Murtough further elaborated and explained how Ten Hag was the “standout choice” among several candidates for the job. Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino was heavily linked with a move to the club.
Ten Hag’s negotiations over a role at United were widely documented and according to Murtough, the former Utrecht boss set out a “long-term vision to build a successful, exciting team.” Furthermore, Murtough argued that Ten Hag was “most closely aligned with the identity and aims of Manchester United.”
Ten Hag’s appointment was made official several weeks before the season ended and that early announcement has offered the club “clarity and confidence” going into the next campaign, says the United chief.
He is also described as a “proven winner,” having won three consecutive Eredivisie titles in charge of Ajax. He was also at the summit of his domestic league in 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic declared the Eredivisie null and void.
Ten Hag’s appointment certainly points toward a change in strategy for Manchester United and the recent exodus of staff could be a sign of things to come.
Only a positive outcome would impress fans, however, with the Glazer family’s ownership turning even the most positive of fans into a cynic.
Ten Hag is the club’s fifth permanent manager since Sir Alex Ferguson retired nine years ago and the Dutchman will be given time but patience is running out for many supporters.