Manchester United were feeling the heat heading into the game against Nottingham Forest on Saturday after a lacklustre start to the new Premier League season.
They somehow escaped by the skin of their teeth against Wolverhampton Wanderers in their opener before succumbing to a tame defeat at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur last week.
It was the worst possible start against Steve Copper’s side at Old Trafford, going down by two goals within the first four minutes. But ultimately, the team produced a classic United comeback to take home all three points with a 3-2 victory.
That took United’s unbeaten run at home under Erik ten Hag to 31 games and the manager deserves credit for tweaking the system in a way to utilise his best players in their natural positions despite a spat of injuries.
ETH has worked miracles since his arrival
The Dutchman’s tenure has largely been a success, with the team now back in the Champions League after securing a third-place finish, while also ending their six-year trophy drought by claiming the Carabao Cup.
Not many fans would have expected such a quick turnaround in fortunes considering what they saw under interim boss Ralf Rangnick — a broken squad, several prominent players leaving and quite a few underperforming stars.
Ten Hag has not had it easy, having to solve major crisis events during his tenure.
In his first season, he dealt admirably with the whole Cristiano Ronaldo saga while in his second campaign, things have threatened to fall apart due to transfer failures and the Mason Greenwood issue hanging like a sword above the club’s neck.
The former Ajax coach has never complained about United’s owners or the difficulties in dealing with certain players and has just got on with his job and he deserves credit for the mindset shift in the team and obvious improvements in the style of play.
As per The Daily Star, the manager is set to be rewarded with a contract extension and a pay rise for his efforts and this will go through regardless of the ownership situation.
The Glazers might not be around for much longer with fan pressure increasing by the day while both Sheikh Jassim and Sir Jim Ratcliffe wait to learn the outcome of the bidding process.
However, the American owners are said to be willing to secure the manager’s long-term future, and negotiations for the same are set to start soon. The manager’s current contract runs until June 2025.
New contract on the way for ETH
“Manchester United are set to give Erik ten Hag a new deal before the end of the year – even if the club has not been sold by then.
“United’s owners, the Glazers have sanctioned the start of negotiations on a two-year extension to the manager’s current contract, which runs until June 2025.
“Ten Hag, who at present pockets £ 9 million annually, could see that increase to around £14 million in a new deal, pushing him closer to United’s highest earners.”
While the sentiment is certainly praiseworthy, the manager requires additional support in the transfer market currently and that should be priority heading into the final few days of the summer window.