The precarious position of Erik ten Hag at Manchester United is becoming increasingly apparent, despite attempts by certain figures within the club to downplay it.
While the Dutchman may currently have some security amidst the ongoing ownership uncertainty, the potential arrival of Sir Jim Ratcliffe as a major shareholder could significantly impact Ten Hag’s future.
Manchester United’s lackluster exit from the Champions League, marked by a 1-0 defeat to Bayern Munich, solidified their fourth-place finish in Group A. With just four points and one win from six games against Bayern, FC Copenhagen, and Galatasaray, the campaign has been nothing short of disastrous.
This disappointing European performance adds to the unwanted records overseen by ten Hag this season, including a 3-0 defeat to Newcastle United in the Carabao Cup and a sixth-place standing in the Premier League with seven defeats from 16 games.
The reported internal issues with ten Hag have further fueled concerns about his management.
According to The Athletic, player discontent is growing, fueled by criticisms of his lack of charisma and distant relationships with many squad members.
Additionally, questions have arisen regarding his handling of certain player situations.
Criticism has been directed at ten Hag’s decision to freeze out Raphael Varane, with players questioning the rationale behind this exclusion.
Concerns have also been raised about the management of Jadon Sancho’s situation, as the 23-year-old winger has been sidelined since September.
Furthermore, some players reportedly expressed dissatisfaction with ten Hag’s public criticism of Casemiro, stating that the Brazilian needed to “play more football” after being substituted at halftime during the Brentford game in October.
While the current hierarchy at United may still support ten Hag, the club is in a state of transition and uncertainty.
As Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS assume power in the new year, ten Hag’s position could face heightened internal scrutiny, making it a crucial period for his tenure.