Gary Neville says Erik ten Hag is facing a ‘huge job’ at Manchester United, but believes the incoming manager will be given time at Old Trafford.
Ten Hag has been confirmed as the club’s next permanent manager and will join from Ajax in the summer, having agreed a deal until 2025 with the option of a further season.
The Dutchman has built a fine reputation across his four seasons with Ajax, but will takeover a Manchester United side in turmoil and facing the prospect of missing out on Champions League football.
Interim boss Ralf Rangnick said this week that he expects mass changes in the squad this summer and former United defender Neville believes Ten Hag has taken on a huge challenge.
Neville said that the 52-year-old not only has a difficult task in rebuilding United, but overtaking Manchester City and Liverpool sides who are arguably the world’s best at present.
“I think he’ll be given some time. He’s got a massive job on and he’s at a club in Ajax who are very different to Manchester United, so he’ll have to adapt,” Neville told Sky Sports.
“The spotlight is obviously a lot greater and scrutiny is a lot greater at Manchester United. And there’s an element of risk to that. He doesn’t know football too well in this country.
“But he’s worked in different countries, he’s got a philosophy he believes in and he’s got to come over here and be his own man and do his own job.
“I’ve been very critical of everything at Manchester United at the moment, but particularly the owners, the culture, the approach to the last 10 years. It’s been a pretty poor 10 years of repeated failure. So he’s got a massive job.
“It’s a huge job, a big ask to come in. And not just because of where Manchester United are currently at but what’s happening at the other clubs in the Premier League in this moment in time.
“Manchester City and Liverpool are absolute Rolls-Royces at this moment in time and Thomas Tuchel is doing a fantastic job at Chelsea. So it’s doubly hard. Not only has he got to correct Manchester United, he’s got to take over two clubs who are purring like you wouldn’t believe.”