Erik ten Hag is just a couple of weeks into his job as Manchester United manager but the Dutchman has already impressed with his brief media appearances so far.
Ten Hag signed a three-year deal earlier this year and has been tasked with rebuilding United following nine disastrous years since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013.
The former Ajax boss is viewed as one of the most progressive coaches in Europe and his appointment speaks to a change in strategy from the United hierarchy, who have typically preferred bigger names in the past.
Ten Hag spoke at his first press conference the day after United’s final game of the season and since then, his squad has already shrunk by a sizeable amount.
Six first-team players are already confirmed to be leaving and there are question marks over several more, with wholesale changes expected to be made to United’s bloated squad.
At Old Trafford, Ten Hag made a point out of shaking everyone’s hand when he was introduced to staff on that Monday morning. That positive first impression seems to have spread elsewhere, with reports now suggesting that he has already made an impact at the club’s Carrington training ground.
That’s according to Goal, who say that Ten Hag’s appointment has sent a ‘surge of electricity’ through the club. Furthermore, he is believed to have been nicknamed the ‘New Sheriff’ since taking the job.
If it wasn’t abundantly clear before, United are in desperate need of a Sheriff setting things straight at the club, with the current group of players undermining his predecessor’s temporary stay.
United have one of their busiest transfer windows ever ahead of them and Ten Hag, who has already targetted two of his former Ajax players in Jurrien Timber and Frenkie de Jong, will hope to overhaul the squad as much as possible.
Lifting the mood at Old Trafford and Carrington is paramount. Spirits have been low for a long time but the 53-year-old’s arrival could finally spark some life into the club.