McClaren slams ‘body language’ of some players as he outlines new Man Utd culture plan

Joe Williams
Man Utd assistant Steve McClaren looks concerned

New Man Utd assistant manager Steve McClaren insists that he expects players to be “class acts” and “accept the consequences” if they get things wrong.

After his appointment as the new Man Utd boss, Erik ten Hag confirmed McClaren and Mitchell van der Gaag would be his two assistants during his time at Old Trafford.

It is a familiar role for McClaren, who was assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson between 1999 and 2001, while Ten Hag worked as his right-hand man during their time together at FC Twente.

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And McClaren has now given Man Utd fans an idea of how he works with the former Middlesbrough and England boss expecting “energy” from all his players.

“These are the things that we need to do, things like we all need to connect with each other,” McClaren told his son on their McClaren Performance podcast.

“Games are won Monday to Friday, if you get Monday to Friday right, games are won on Saturday. Each and everyone has to bring energy.”

McClaren then referenced former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino and his ruthless streak with underperforming players. He added: “Pochettino talks about creating the culture, if no one brought energy he got them out, they had to bring some kind of energy to the group.”

Some Man Utd players were criticised for their negative body language last season and that is something McClaren is keen to avoid.

He continued: “You have to be ready, have to be ready to train, you have to be ready to play, ready to impact as a sub, you have to react.

“A lot of people now, body language arms up in the air, you’ve got to react to get that ball back, win that ball back, whatever situation, react quick don’t think about it.

“You’ve got to accept the rules, the conditions, you’ve got to accept the consequences if you do things wrong. You’ve got to commit, you’ve got to be a class act.You’ve got to be a class act, especially in today’s football.”

Speaking about certain non-negotiables in a winning culture, McClaren said: “When I first went to Manchester United there was hardly any rules but what they did; they did the right things and if they didn’t do the right things they owned it and they suffered the consequences and accepted the consequences.

“And I think if you’ve got those non-negotiables around that then you can’t go wrong.”