TNT Sports pundit Robbie Savage says he expects Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag to be given until Christmas to improve the club’s performance.
The Red Devils suffered a humbling 3-0 home defeat to rivals City last weekend, their fifth loss in only 10 league fixtures and, in his column for Planet Sport Bet, Savage wrote that results must change over the next 2 months for ten Hag to remain in his job:
“If you look at the time Erik ten Hag has had and compare it with Ange Postecoglou at Spurs, Roberto De Zerbi at Brighton, Mikel Arteta at Arsenal, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool or Pep Guardiola at Manchester City, the stark difference is no one knows how Manchester United play or at least what they are trying to do.”
“It’s a bit of a mess right now and while I still believe they need to give Erik ten Hag until Christmas to get things right, he’s certainly had enough time to make the club challenge and be competitive against the likes of City.”
Ten Hag must get his team playing better football
As Savage says, it is not only the results that are concerning many fans and pundits, it’s the nature of the performances. Against City, ten Hag set up his team to play on the back foot at home.
The Dutchman was effectively acknowledging that United are inferior. Of course, no one is naive enough to say that going toe-to-toe against a Pep Guardiola-managed side would be the right approach, but you do expect more.
After spending 16 months in the job and spending over £400m on new signings, fans should would like to have seen more progress.
Drawing comparisons between United and Arsenal is flawed logic
Some have cited Arsenal’s patience with Mikel Arteta as a reason for keeping faith with ten Hag. After all, it took the Gunners until the Spaniard’s fourth season before they challenged for the Premier League title.
However, it should be pointed out that Arteta was managing his first club, and he had limited financial backing initially. In contrast, ten Hag has been in the dugout for over a decade and got Ajax to a Champions League semi-final.
You only have to look at what Ange Postecoglou has done at Tottenham to know things don’t have to take that long to transform a club.