The Manchester United squad is divided over the potential appointment of Erik ten Hag as the club’s next permanent manager, according to reports.
Ajax boss Ten Hag is the frontrunner to take over at Old Trafford at the end of the season, when Ralf Rangnick will leave his interim post to take up a consultancy role. The Dutchman has already been interviewed for the job and he is understood to have made a positive impression on club chiefs.
Ten Hag is highly regarded by many clubs across Europe having led Ajax to two league-cup doubles since taking over in 2017.
However, the Manchester Evening News claimed he is not a popular choice for the hot seat for many in the United dressing room.
Some players are said to view the 52-year-old as an underwhelming option whereas others are excited about the prospect of being coached by him.
The report added Mauricio Pochettino was the preferred choice for many players and the Paris Saint-Germain manager has a wealth of Premier League experience from his time with Southampton and Tottenham. Spain’s Luis Enrique and Sevilla’s Julen Lopetegui were also included on the United hierarchy’s shortlist for the job.
Nonetheless, Ten Hag is the leading candidate and it will cost just £1.7million to release him from his Ajax contract this summer, one year before it is set to expire. The Manchester Evening News also notes there is mass unrest in the United squad and this only worsened with Saturday evening’s disappointing 1-1 draw at home to Leicester.
The result came as a further blow to the Red Devils’ hopes of Champions League qualification, leaving them three points behind fourth-placed Tottenham. The report added the squad was bemused by Marcus Rashford’s omission from the starting XI given Cristiano Ronaldo and Edinson Cavani were unavailable. Bruno Fernandes was handed the centre-forward duties as a false-nine and he played a key role in the build-up to Fred’s second-half goal, which levelled the score after Kelechi Iheanacho’s opener.
United was fortunate to leave Old Trafford with a point, as James Maddison seemed to have snatched victory for the Foxes with a late goal. However, VAR chalked off the Englishman’s strike as Iheanacho was ruled to have fouled Raphael Varane in the build-up. United will hope to get back to winning ways on Saturday, when they travel to Goodison Park to face Everton. Ten Hag, meanwhile, led Ajax to a 3-1 victory over Groningen over the weekend to extend the Amsterdam giants’ lead at the top of the Eredivisie table.