Man Utd boss Ten Hag labels Onana ‘second-best goalkeeper in the Premier League’ despite horror show

Joe Williams
Man Utd goalkeeper Andre Onana and Erik ten Hag
Andre Onana and Erik ten Hag shake hands after a match.

Erik ten Hag has labelled Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana as the “second-best goalkeeper in the Premier League based on stats” despite his terrible performance against Galatasaray in midweek.

The Red Devils twice threw away a two-goal lead against the Turkish side on Wednesday with Onana criticised for failing to keep out two Hakim Ziyech free-kicks.

Man Utd legend Paul Scholes and some other critics also thought he should’ve done better for Galatasaray’s third goal with calls from some to replace him in the winter transfer window.

Onana, who only joined from Inter Milan in the summer, has actually been the joint second-best Premier League goalkeeper in terms of statistics and Ten Hag was keen to point that out in his pre-match press conference on Friday.

Man Utd boss Ten Hag told reporters: “If you analyse it well then you see he is the second-best goalkeeper in the Premier League based on stats, his expected preventing goals is second-best in the Premier League.

“He’s doing well but he knows that in the Champions League he has made some mistakes but all over in the first five months he has done well.”

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On Onana, Ten Hag added: “You know also. Because you have seen how he is reacting on a bad performance like in Munich at Burnley he was outstanding. He is a strong character, he is a personality and he will deal with it.”

Asked whether he was frustrated with the result against Galatasaray, Ten Hag replied: “You say it very good. How good we play. On Wednesday, we played very good, also in Copenhagen.

“Even in Bayern Munich we played very good. But we have to do some things better. Eliminate individual errors, transition but we can sort this out and I would be more concerned if we didn’t play well.”

Kobbie Mainoo starred in the Red Devils’ recent victory over Everton but was taken out of the starting XI to face Galatasaray.

However, Ten Hag insists it was just to manage his Man Utd squad and that the youngster could be involved again when they face Newcastle United on Saturday.

On Mainoo, Ten Hag said: “If he’s ready or not, he showed on Sunday he was ready and then we have to manage three games in six days to get the best results of all the games, we have more than 11 players, we have good options there. Sofyan showed he was playing a good game.

“We have to manage the load of the players and it’s about freshness as well.”

Asked what he likes about Mainoo, Ten Hag replied: “His scanning, it looks like he always has time because he is scanning, he is running free, he is scanning to see the options and make the right decisions. Can delay, can speed up, he makes the right decisions.”