Man Utd stars ‘concerned’ about ‘Erik ten Hag demand’ as head coach ‘contributes’ to issue

Lewis Oldham
Erik ten Hag applauding with a prominent Manchester United badge alongside him.
Erik ten Hag is under pressure.

According to reports, some Manchester United players have ‘concerns’ about what Erik ten Hag has been ‘demanding’ of them this season.

Ten Hag is near the end of his second season as Man Utd‘s head coach. Under the Dutchman, the Red Devils enjoyed a successful campaign in 2022/23 as they won the Carabao Cup and qualified for the Champions League.

This season has been far more difficult for Ten Hag and Man Utd, though. They look likely to miss out on the top four after earlier this season, they exited the Champions League and Carabao Cup prematurely.

Man Utd remain in the FA Cup but they have drawn Liverpool in the next round so they are at risk of ending this season without a trophy.

Several Premier League sides have been seriously hampered by injuries this season but Man Utd have arguably been the worst impacted.

Ten Hag has only been able to name his best XI on a couple of occasions this season. He was without Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw, Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Anthony Martial, Mason Mount, Tyrell Malacia and Rasmus Hojlund for their 3-1 loss to Man City in the Manchester derby on Sunday afternoon.

Marcus Rashford and Jonny Evans were forced off due to injury scares against City. Speaking post-match, Ten Hag said: “I had to take them both off. They fought to be part of this game but after 60 or 70 minutes we had to take them off and sub them.

“We’re working on players returning and I think players will return in the coming weeks, especially after the international break. Hopefully Jonny Evans and Marcus Rashford are not too bad, that they recover and we can use them in the next game against Everton.”

READ MORE: Mediawatch… Marcus Rashford ‘silenced his critics’ despite Man United defeat in ‘end-to-end’ derby clash

Now a report from Manchester Evening News claims ‘a minority of United players are concerned about the running demands from manager Erik ten Hag’.

They added. ‘It is understood some players believe the intensity is too taxing after United’s 62-game campaign last season and the workload has contributed to the club’s injury toll.’

Ten Hag’s training methods have been a consistent talking point since his arrival as head coach ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.

Man Utd started last season with losses to Brighton and Brentford. Thomas Frank’s side ran 13.8km more than United’s players during their win so as a punishment, Ten Hag made his squad run that distance on their scheduled day off and he ‘joined’ in.  

The report from The Athletic claimed Ten Hag ‘took part in the running session to show his togetherness with his players’ and his Man Utd players ‘appeared to react positively to his unorthodox method’.

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