Five Man Utd players most at risk of the axe under Ten Hag after Ajax boss ‘reaches verbal agreement to become manager’

MANCHESTER UNITED have had a breakthrough with their quest for the club’s next long-term manager as positive news has finally come through following Erik Ten Hag’s recent interview with the board.

When noting that Paris Saint-Germain are happy with Mauricio Pochettino, Luis Enrique has no intentions of managing a football club ahead of the 2022 World Cup, and the talks with Julen Lopetegui have quietened down, all signs are leading to the arrival of the 52-year-old Dutchman.

Ten Hag has reportedly reached a verbal agreement with Man UtdCredit: PA

Ten Hag is commonly known for his possession-based style of play, where he likes the players within the team to be technically composed and have the intelligence to move into different areas of the pitch from time to time.

As he has shown to have high expectations on the squads he manages and is constantly critical of himself and the Ajax players in victories and defeats, there are a number of individuals at Old Trafford who could be in trouble following his appointment as United’s manager.

With no further ado, here are five players that could be axed from the team and the club…

Aaron Wan-Bissaka

United will potentially need to sell their deadwood before they proceed forward with going on a spending spree under the new manager.

The first player they should look to sell is Aaron Wan-Bissaka, someone who is not comfortable with the ball at his feet and cannot progress forward with possession.

Rangnick favours Dalot over Wan-Bissaka

Rangnick favours Dalot over Wan-BissakaCredit: Getty

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Diogo Dalot has pushed the right-back out of the starting line-up under Ralf Rangnick.

With Ten Hag preferring full-backs who can constantly overlap the wide attacking outlets and tuck into the midfield area to provide extra presence, this is something that Wan-Bissaka does not have
the capability of doing as he is regarded as an old-fashioned defender.

United spent £50million for his services a few years ago, and they could recoup half the figure they paid should they accept a loss, with potential buyers in Burnley, Everton and Crystal Palace.

Anthony Martial

Anthony Martial has experienced a below-par season and a huge lack of confidence has led to him being loaned out to Sevilla in the January window.

He has not performed to his old standards and failing to silence his doubters.

Martial's loan spell at Sevilla has been unsuccessful so far

Martial’s loan spell at Sevilla has been unsuccessful so farCredit: Alamy

With Ten Hag having the desire of wanting attackers that will
constantly press in the opposition’s half as well as provide the intelligent movement on and off the ball, it can confidently be stated that the Frenchman will not be in the manager’s long-term plans.

The 26-year-old could still act as an impact substitute, however, the club will not want players that are top earners in the squad to be sat on the bench for the majority of the season.

Martial was once upon a time regarded as a player that had the potential of being world class.

But he has been underperforming the last two seasons and United will need to be ruthless with individuals who are becoming passengers in the team in order to reach the levels of Liverpool and Man City.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo will without a doubt be the most important player to worry about upon Ten Hag’s arrival, as he is at the age where he cannot provide the aggressive high pressing or intelligent
movement on a regular basis.

On top of that, there is also a huge concern that the Portuguese
international may leave should the club fail to finish in the top four positions, which is also another problem for the Ajax manager, as there are several positional areas to address this summer.

Ronaldo's contract expires next summer

Ronaldo’s contract expires next summerCredit: Getty

Ronaldo will have to accept a squad role should he decide to see out the remainder of his contract at United.

However, this will be high unlikely as he is the type of player that is always hungry for goal-scoring records and trophies.

Should that be the case, seeing the forward leave may be seen as a blessing in disguise, as it would allow Ten Hag to implement his advanced setup without accommodating for anyone whilst bringing balance to the wage structure.

David De Gea

Without a doubt, David De Gea is regarded as one of the best shot-stoppers in Europe, though, it is his main strength whilst having a lot of other weaknesses.

Within the modern era of football, goalkeepers are expected to have the ability to play out from the back whilst showing the composure to play the role as the sweeper keeper, which is something the Spaniard is unable to do.

De Gea has struggled to get into the Spain squad

De Gea has struggled to get into the Spain squadCredit: Getty

Due to his lack of ball-playing quality, distributing possession right into the feet of the opposition, he is no longer picked by Luis Enrique for the national team.

Unai Simon, Robert Sanchez and David Raya are chosen ahead of him.

De Gea will unsurprisingly be one of the first big name individuals to
be dropped by Ten Hag, but it will be unlikely to see him leave the club because of his high wages.

Scott McTominay

Scott McTominay has been a regular starter for United this season, achieving just over 30 appearances in all competitions for the Red Devils.

Although he attempts to bring balance to the midfield through his physicality and interceptions/tackles, he does not offer enough for when the side look to dominate possession.

McTominay has been a regular name on the team sheet this season

McTominay has been a regular name on the team sheet this seasonCredit: Getty

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He fails to prevent himself as a passing option and he does not have the ability to dictate the game, something that is important within the holding midfielder role.

On the other hand, he will be a crucial individual to have as a squad player, someone that can provide fresh legs and energy for when the side are in control of the result and need a midfielder to finish the game off.

With Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba expected to leave in the summer, McTominay’s development could totally advance, and he could become complete under Ten Hag.


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