Pundit claims Man Utd are ‘vulnerable’ in crucial position which could expose Ten Hag’s side

Ben Stewart
Soccer Football - Europa League - Play-Off First Leg - FC Barcelona v Manchester United - Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain - February 16, 2023 FC Barcelona's Robert Lewandowski in action with Manchester United's Luke Shaw

Former Newcastle star Warren Barton believes that Manchester United are vulnerable at full-back and could be exposed in this area.

Erik ten Hag has done a fine job at Old Trafford so far and he has managed to lay the foundations of a solid defensive unit.

Man United have kept a total of 10 clean sheets in the Premier League, which has only been bettered by Newcastle this season.

The likes of Luke Shaw, Diogo Dalot and Aaron Wan-Bissaka have each improved under Ten Hag, but Barton still thinks the position is an area of weakness.

Due to the way that Ten Hag sets up his side, Barton believes that Newcastle can get some joy out of their full-backs in the Carabao Cup final.

“I think they are vulnerable in certain areas, you can get at their full-backs and our wide players are good enough to hurt them,” Barton told Chronicle Live.

“I don’t see Eddie sitting back trying to grind out a result, maybe in moments of the game but I think he has shown when there is a right time, we can get forward and overrun them.

“Manchester United are very much a forward-thinking team, it leaves them a bit exposed. I think Eddie will go out there to win, not to frustrate them but we’ll go toe to toe.

“Eddie will be positive in his outlook, and he’s built a team which does play a good brand of football and he wants to hurt teams and overrun them.

“I’m sure Manchester United will be thinking the same thing, but we have a mindset in the Premier League where we don’t lose games. We’re hard to play against and score against, they have to overcome that.”

Man United’s attention will now be on the Europa League before they face Newcastle in the Carabao Cup final on Sunday.

Despite Barton thinking that Man United are vulnerable in the full-back position, Kieran Trippier recently highlighted Luke Shaw as one of their best players.

“Luke has been unbelievable,” the Newcastle defender told talkSPORT.

“For me as a player, I can’t be focussing on individuals. I need to focus on myself, team and how we prepare to try and hurt Man United.”

Both sides played out a goalless draw at Old Trafford in October last year, but plenty has changed since they last met.

Newcastle will be looking to get the better of Man United’s full-backs, but with the form of Shaw and Wan-Bissaka, that will be easier said than done.

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