Ten Hag sack? There are 10 reasons why Man Utd will and should keep him…

Editor F365
Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag
Erik ten Hag is at risk of being sacked by Manchester United.

The future of Erik ten Hag is still being debated in the Mailbox while Arsenal’s season is either success or failure. You decide…

Send your thoughts on any subject to theeditor@football365.com


Ten Hag in!
There is no reason to sack Ten Hag. Give him a fully fit side and THEN if they don’t perform, yes sack him.
Navin Dayaram


Ten Hag in: A more detailed argument
Since F365 and the media in general are persisting with their – at this point rabid – refusal to accept that ten Hag will be keeping his job, I thought I might try a little gentle analysis on you.

There are several separate reasons why Manchester United will not be changing their manager this season, and all of them are both easy to understand and openly known.

First up, and the reason you always seem to cite as a Ten Hag failure, on pitch performance.

  • In the two seasons he has been in charge of Manchester United he has reached three out of four domestic cup finals.
  • He has won two of the four domestic cups available.
  • If the two league season tables were combined, Manchester United would finish fourth behind City, Liverpool and Arsenal.
  • In the two seasons Ten Hag has been in England, only Guardiola and City have won more trophies.

Secondly, off pitch performance.

  • He was brought in to slash and burn the existing squad. He was never expected to be challenging for trophies in the first place, his remit was to cut out the deadwood, bring in youth and build a platform and a consistent ethos which had been missing for a decade.
  • That job has been made vastly more difficult by Ronaldo, Greenwood and Sancho, and by the takeover process effectively freezing all executive level decisions.
  • Added to that has been the enormous level of injury in defence especially meaning a complete lack of cohesion and team building until the last few weeks of the campaign. Mainoo and Mount, both of whom were intended to be part of the first choice midfield from the start of pre-season missed half and most of the season respectively. Martial and Hojlund both missed months.
  • Despite the off field disruption on both playing and backroom levels, Ten Hag did his job here too. Dalot and Wan Bissaka are vastly improved as players. McTominnay, Hojlund, Garnacho, Diallo and Onana all finished the season as better players than they started it.

Thirdly, finances.

United cannot afford to fire Ten Hag even if they wanted to. Paying off Ten Hag and his staff would cost millions out of a budget that is already strained thin. Bringing in anyone currently in a job would cost millions more. United do not have that money spare.

Fourthly, practicality.

All of the people who would need to be involved in the task of identifying, analysing and persuading the next manager, approaching their club, negotiating compensation and contracts etc are not currently permitted to do any work for United. Both Ashworth and Berardi are currently in their gardens, not in boardrooms.

So to summarise, F365 believe that United should sack a manager who despite operating in a literal bin fire of a club has delivered two trophies in two years, cut out the deadwood in United’s squad, improved players, brought in youth and has the backing of 78% of United fans according to a poll in the Independent this morning, because… Why?

I can tell you why, actually. It’s because the media bubble are all to a greater or lesser extent sheep who follow the narrative shepherd, and the United mafia of Ferdinand, Scholes, Neville and Keane were so outraged that ten Hag (correctly) binned off Ronaldo that they’ve been overwhelmingly negative at every opportunity since, which has meant all perspective among the media has been lost.

That’s why none of the fans agree with you. Your point of view isn’t one based on results, or events at the club, or basic logic, because otherwise it wouldn’t be your point of view.

You and the rest of the media have been led by the nose by old team mates of Ronaldo who got all pissy in studios and on Youtube because their friend was “disrespected” and its led to this point, where your readers think you’re at best unable to understand what you’re looking at, and at worst actively trying to get a man fired for clicks.

Anyway, Ten Hag will not be sacked by United unless they are as illogical and foolish as you’ve been.

I don’t really expect this to be published, since perfectly respectful comments saying the same thing are mysteriously admined to oblivion. But we do know what you’re doing, and we don’t like it.
Tim Sutton (actually you know what Amrabat was dragged up to a 6/10 too, Ten Hag INNNNN)

👉 Man Utd owner Ratcliffe ‘sets five strict new rules’ with Ten Hag replacement ‘unable to use own style’
👉 Ten Hag sack: 10 other managers who lost their jobs straight after winning trophies


Southgate? Why?
Why does anyone think that Gareth Southgate after doing a medium to good job with England should suddenly be a top 6 club manager when his club management experience was poor to average at best?

My view is good club managers can but don’t always make good international managers, however I don’t think good international managers really become good club managers based on their international management experience.

I’m struggling to think of any average club managers that then went on to prove their value at international level and hence stepped up to a prime club manager job. Can anyone else?

I can think of several successful international managers such as Klinsmann, Low and Lemerre who were average club managers (or in Klinsmann’s case had no experience) before succeeding in international football but then did very little in club football after.

Sure, great club managers like Lippi or del Bosque could step in and succeed in international football, but in the main great managers are not defined by international success and many great club managers fail at international level.

Has anyone got an example of a manager that made their name in international football or significantly enhanced their reputation after largely failing at club level then took a plum club job after their international success and succeeded?

Sure, the likes of Bobby Robson enhanced his reputation with England but he had already had huge success at club level before that.

Looking at the current list of successful international managers in this mould does anyone see the likes of Santos of Portugal or Scaloni of Argentina taking a top tier Champions League club managers job, I don’t?

Maybe I am missing something!
Paul K, London

READ: Gareth Southgate in the Premier League: 24 damning statistics Manchester United should see


Why Arteta spend does not matter
One of the most common criticisms of managers is to judge them against how much money they have spent. We saw this in yesterday’s mailbox saying Arteta had spent close to a billion. Makes sense, right? Spend a billion pounds and you expect some return. Except it’s a completely misguided way of thinking. Sums are so vast that a billion pounds sounds like it should get you some silverware, but it’s not the figure that we should be looking at (and before you get excited, I’m not talking about net spend).

The only relevant number with regards to spending, is how much you have spent compared to your rivals. If you spend a billion and your nearest rival spends 5 billion (this hasn’t happened, it’s just illustrating the point) you could hardly criticise a manager for not winning the title.

Look back at the first 5 years of the Abramovic era at chelsea. Chelsea spent €575m (all figures from transfermarkt.com, hence the Euros). In modern terms, that’s not a huge amount. Howe do we know it was a lot at the time? Because, the next highest team on that list is Manchester United who spent €283m. In that circumstance, you would obviously expect Chelea to win titles, and you’d have to give Ferguson and United enormous credit for winning 2 league titles and the Champions League.

It’s like Jurgen Klopp. Rival fans love to trot out individual large fees. He spent €935m. But the fact is, in his time at Liverpool, they were the 6th highest spenders in England. Not net spend, gross spend. Man City, starting with a stronger squad, spent 1.5bn. Klopp performed miracles to compete.

So how does Arteta compare? Since he joined they have spent €835.54m. 4th in the Premier League. Behind United and City and miles behind Chelsea. GIven the starting squad he had compared to City, he has done a fantastic job at closing the gap.

It’s all very well saying that managers have to win titles, but only one team can win the league. He is up against arguably the greatest manager of all time. They have spent less than City, have a lower wage bill than City and started his role with a significantly worse squad than City. So why are you expecting him to win the league? He is the only manager other than Klopp that has run City close in the last 7 years. Give him time, I am sure trophies will come. Sacking him would be madness.
Mike, LFC, Dubai


Arteta has made me love Arsenal again
I do love it when people tell Arsenal supporters how we should feel, and if our manager doesn’t win a trophy next season, then we must all want him to leave. Says who?

Are these the same people who tell us that Saka is overrated or that Ben White is average?

I’m an Arsenal season ticket holder, and I have been for many, many years. This is the most enjoyable team we have witnessed since the Invincibles. I, like many others, felt a remoteness to the late Wenger and Emery era, but Arteta has brought back a connection to the fans that makes me love watching the team again rather than feeling obligated, as it is something I have always done.

I’m fully back in because of Arteta, Edu and an excellent team full of players that I am proud to support. Why on earth would we want to give that up because someone who watches Arsenal occasionally on the television tells us that missing out by two points to City is a failure? Thanks for the offer but I really don’t want to be Chelsea.

And if you honestly believe that finishing on -1 goal difference and 29 points behind Arsenal equates to United having the better season, then you need to sit in a darkened room for quite some time.
Steve Lynch


…Will another trophyless season mean we are claiming for his head? Well. Two responses.

1. Don’t be soft. And stop trying to make jeopardy where there is none. Arteta is quality and everybody – especially Arsenal – know it. Judge a manager by who hires them after you bin them off. Everybody would look at Arteta.

If winning a cup – a somewhat random act of success – was all it took to be judged favourably, then why is it that Tuchel, Wenger, Van gaal – all giants of the game – didn’t survive long after a cup win ? It’s a not-very-sticky band aid.

Perhaps Arteta should throw away 3-4 games and come 4th in the league – in search of an FA Cup so that he gets to keep his job?

As I said. Don’t be soft.

However – response 2.

It depends. If we are assuming that Arsenal gets 87plus points and loses the league to Sky Blue Accounting Incorporated again while being knocked out of the ECL and FA Cup by a top 10 side in Europe ( as has been the case of late – Bayern. City Liverpool) then it’s still daft to suggest it’s failure.

However. If Arsenal finish below Villa or Spurs or Liverpool in the league and go out of the FA Cup to Fulham and the ECL to Feyenoord. Then yeah – we can talk.
Johnno (The Lego haired god will get his flowers. And it will be glorious)


Maybe try winning a cup though…?
I’m very much liking Arsenal fans twist themselves into knots over season retrospective. So, the FA Cup isn’t that important… except, apparently, the most successful team in the league currently seem to value it. Or when Arsenal won it.

Maybe, in the world where Team 115 win the league again and the rest reach new levels to fall just short, it’s worth at least giving some sort of silverware a go? I mean, if you’re just coming second (still just the Top 4 Trophy) every year, maybe it’s worth branching out, else you’ll have nothing to look back on. And hell, if 8th placed Man United can win it, surely big bad Arteta can do it?


…I know you’re probably bored of these emails, but after Seamus’s defence of his position, I couldn’t help but point out 2 things.

To anyone saying Top 4 is more important and a better season than winning a trophy, I hope you’ve never made a single comment mocking Spurs’ 16yr drought as apparently, we’ve been absolutely right to prioritise Top 4, which we’ve achieved multiple times, over a tinpot win…

And then there was Seamus’s line that “The game is entertainment after all”. Now I admit, this is a personal bugbear of mine, but no it is not!!!! Football is a sport and whilst sport is entertaining, but it is not entertainment!! Sport is competition and thus about determining who is best at something above all else. That you and I experiencing an entertaining moment from watching it is a sub product, but not its primary purpose!!! Things where entertainment are the primary purpose are music, cinema, theatre etc…

Therefore, the only thing that really matters in sport is the winning of tournaments and trophies, period!
Paul (Spurs), T.Wells


Full disclosure, Liverpool fan here of 30 years. My mates got me a Cameo of Roy Evans if that helps place me in their timeline.

After reading Calvino and Mr Moses’s emails yesterday I can’t but help disagree with their general arguments that cups trump all, and everything else is forgotten.

B-Rodge’s glorious failure due to the ‘slip’ is still one of my all time favourite Liverpool seasons. The fact the ‘slip’ is brought up many times by rival fans also makes me sure in the fact that it will never be forgotten.

Sure, cups are great (give Clop [sic] a statue), but great seasons, even without silverware are never forgotten. Great games, moments and memories are what last.

I have a Tsimikas shirt bought after his winning peno in the Carabao/Fa cup where we played Chelsea (iirc) in both finals. Point is I can’t remember which cup it was. I remember the feeling, and that’s what matters, not the particular silverware.

And maybe this is a bad case in point as it is actually winning a cup, however, Alisson’s header v West Brom will stick in my memory for just as long as the Barcelona semi. Heck the Dortmund one does, and we lost that year to Sevilla.

Tl;dr – only a few teams win cups at the end of a season. Give me wonderful, lifetime memories over any staid league win.
Bodych (MAW, I salute your long bracket)


Boehly has no imagination
Well looks like Boehly has done it again, he seems to just use the homework copying approach to his transfer strategy, and now he has looked at Arsenal having done well with an ex Man C assistant manager and decided to copy that too.

Also, a bit of a mercenary move by Maresca, Leicester took a chance and gave someone unproven a shot, now he’s buggering off at the earliest opportunity.

All in all, seems a perfect fit for Chelsea really.


Bring in the clowns…
I’m a Chelsea fan, & have been for 55 years! Totally agree with you as regards the possible appointment of Enzo Maresca as Chelsea manager—- sorry, should be as ‘Chelsea Coach’, ‘cos that will be his role——Winstanley & Stewart (with Clearlake’s clearance) in charge of buying & selling players, with the coach essentially in charge of training sessions.

Pretty sure that Poch’s departure was due, not to poor performances**, but to the fact that he was asked to be a coach, & not a manager; something someone of his stature could not, quite rightly, accept. Yes, as you stated, the clowns in the States want a yes man.

** performances were OK, & were getting better. IF at the end of the 2022/23 season, when Chelsea finished 12th, you’d asked me if I would accept 6th next season, & therefore a place in Europe, plus one cup final, & another Cup semi, I’d have taken it; & even the Cup defeats were possibly bad luck, AND the fact that the owners did not see it advisable to buy a couple of experienced players—- Poch wanted to buy Maddison, but as he was over 25, he wasn’t bought. The owners only want young players, as their values would increase; over 25’s values naturally tend to fall.

Yes, the previous regime also hired & fired managers—- but the previous regime won 21 trophies in 19 years! And this lot? I predict a mid table finish next season, & reaching the knockout stages of the ‘Conference’.

When you bring in the clowns (Boehly, Eghbali & Feliciano), you get a circus!


Dear Ed (he/him, she/her, they/them don’t want to offend anyone)…
In regards to your Top 25 Euro pundits, you do know it’s a men’s tournament? You’ve shoehorned womens football into it three times.

Honestly who cares if Ian Wright is an advocate of women’s football?? What’s that got to do with the nonsense he spouts?? Keane and Neville?? More bearable that Neville and Carragher, but only just. And Aluko should be bottom of the list. She has no clue about football, men’s or women’s. She shouldn’t be near a tv screen. It used to be based on talent. Now it’s quota picks. And the experience is not the better for it.
Weldoninhio, BAC