Ten Hag says there’s ‘huge potential’ at Man Utd as he relishes ‘battling’ with Premier League’s best

Erik ten Hag believes there is ‘huge potential’ at Manchester United and says he is relishing the chance to battle with the Premier League’s leading coaches.

Ten Hag has started work as Manchester United’s new manager following his decision to leave Ajax for the Premier League side and was in attendance during the Red Devils’ 1-0 defeat at Crystal Palace on Sunday.


The Dutchman arrives a side who have endured a disappointing campaign, registering their lowest ever Premier League points total and finishing without a positive goal difference for the first time since the 1989/90 campaign.

Despite their struggles this season however, Ten Hag believes there is significant potential in the current squad.

“I’m still in the process of analysing. I’m looking forward to working with these players,” Ten Hag told his first press conference as Manchester United manager.

“The season before, this squad was second in the Premier League and there’s huge potential. If we improve, if we can work with them, we can get better results.”

Ten spoke on his ambitions and admitted his focus is not on winning the Premier League title in the short-term, insisting his rebuilding of the club will take ‘time’.

He did, however, discuss his excitement at going head-to-head with the Premier League’s best coaches.

“I don’t think about that at this moment,” he said on winning the Premier League. “I’m thinking that this is a project and it takes time. We want to win every game. We go from game to game and then we’ll see.

“It’s a fantastic league. I’ve already met big coaches and big teams in the Premier League and I know how to deal with that. But it’s clear, the Premier League is the biggest league in the world I think and I’m looking forward to battling with them.”

While saying that the ‘project’ will take time, he accepts that there is always pressure at ‘at the top’

“What we are thinking about is this is a project, I know it takes time, but I also know that in this club, and I have the experience with other clubs like Ajax and Bayern Munich, at the top there’s never time.

“But we want to win, we want every game, so we go from game to game and then we will see.”

Ten Hag was asked whether the move to Manchester represents a risk for his reputation, with a series of high-profile appointments having failed at Old Trafford.

The former Ajax boss dismissed that notion and says his focus is on building a successful future for the side.

“I don’t see it as a risk,” he insisted. “This club has a great history and now let’s make a future.

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“It is really exciting to do that with the people around at the club, we will bring new people into the staff, and work with the players to try and achieve success.”

United’s season ended with a dismal display to lose at Crystal Palace on Sunday, extending their recent record to six straight away losses. Ten Hag said he observed and analysed the clash, but refused to give any thoughts on the game publicly.

“I observed it, I analysed it, but it’s for me. I wasn’t in charge and I take this information into the new season.”

Read – Premier League Team of the Week – Gameweek 38

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