Erik ten Hag is supposedly on the verge of being hired as Manchester United’s next manager. Despite interest from Mauricio Pochettino, Julen Lopetegui, and Luis Enrique, the Ajax manager is now leading the battle to take over at Old Trafford. And it’s been said that if he is appointed, Robin van Persie will be his assistant.
Manchester United is looking for a new manager.
And it was revealed late Tuesday evening that they’d conducted negotiations with Ten Hag, whose future at Ajax is currently in doubt as to the Red Devils circle.
Stretty News has since reported that United wants to bring in a former player to help their new manager, with a deal for Ten Hag ‘on the verge of being finalized.’
Rio Ferdinand is one name being considered, though members of the club’s management are alleged to have reservations about his appropriateness for the position.
Van Persie is another example.
The veteran striker previously spent three years at the club, helping them win the Premier League title in 2013.
Before being sold to Fenerbahce in 2015, he played for Sir Alex Ferguson, David Moyes, and Louis van Gaal.
And Van Persie has previously demonstrated his ruthlessness by criticizing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for smiling too much after a defeat.
“When I listen to Ole, he sounds like a genuinely pleasant guy,” Van Persie said following a 2-0 loss on New Year’s Day in 2020.
“I’d want to see him be a little meaner at times, just be angry.”
“After a game like that, I can see him beaming. This is not the moment to smile.”
And this prompted Solskjaer to respond, adding, “I don’t know Robin, and Robin doesn’t know me.”
“He probably doesn’t have a right to condemn my management style and I won’t alter. That is undeniable.
“Yeah, Robin, he took my No. 20, and that’s probably all he’ll take from me.”
“I’m not in medieval times!” he added.
If Van Persie becomes Ten Hag’s assistant, he may carry that harsh streak with him to United.
And that is something the players require considering their poor form in all competitions this season under both Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick.
Meanwhile, former Manchester United star Louis Saha backed Zinedine Zidane’s prospective hiring earlier this month, despite the club’s interest in other candidates.
“”I like the concept of Zidane because he will be respected by the players,” he remarked.
“But, given how difficult the Premier League is, I’d expect even him to struggle at initially.
“Erik ten Hag profited from working for a well-managed club in Ajax with a well-defined organization.
“He has quality, he has people around him, and the Dutch are incredibly informed about football, but United are a different animal than Ajax.
“Ajax is a stepping stone for bigger clubs; they are well-respected in the world of football, but they are not among the top.
“They aren’t Milan or Real Madrid, so most of the players will be unaware of him. They’ll have heard of his name but that’s about it.
“Managing United is a different beast altogether; we’ve seen some great names come in and get chewed out.”