Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Next Man Utd manager: Ratcliffe turns to outsider for Liverpool job after Ten Hag sack call made

Man Utd, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, Thomas Frank, Gareth Southgate, Erik ten Hag

Two reports have delivered huge updates on the managerial position at Manchester United, with Erik ten Hag learning his fate and a Liverpool-linked boss superseding Gareth Southgate as Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s first choice.

It’s been a rocky second season for Ten Hag at Old Trafford, with Man Utd struggling to qualify for next season’s Champions League. The competition’s expanded format next term may result in fifth place being good enough to qualify. However, United currently sit sixth and trail fifth-placed Tottenham by six points.

Positives have emerged, most notably the emergence in Kobbie Kainoo after Ten Hag showed faith in the youngster.

Furthermore, the dramatic 4-3 victory to dump Liverpool out of the FA Cup and end their hopes of a quadruple will live long in the memory.

A recent report from the Guardian claimed Ten Hag’s position as Man Utd manager is safe until at least the end of the season.

Now, a fresh update from i news has backed up that claim. However, they also state Man Utd decision-makers, Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sir Dave Brailsford, are actually planning for Ten Hag to be the club’s manager next season and beyond. As such, Ten Hag seems to be in zero danger of losing his job until the summer at the earliest.

It’s stated the victory over Liverpool has played a major role in convincing the INEOS chiefs.

Nonetheless i news then add that while the current plan is for Ten Hag to remain, United are ‘developing a strategy to be able to move quickly should they decide to replace him.’

Ashworth/Berrada input key

A final decision on whether to stick or twist on the Dutchman reportedly won’t be made until Dan Ashworth arrives.

Ashworth is Newcastle’s sporting director and has been placed on gardening leave by the Magpies amid Man Utd’s pursuit. United are still to agree a compensation fee with Newcastle.

i news add the ultimate decision on whether Ten Hag is axed will be made by Ashworth in conjunction with new CEO, Omar Berrada.

“Making big calls without consulting the experts is not what Sir Dave [Brailsford] does,” the i quote a source as saying.

“If anything, he will ask too many people’s opinions. Delegating to the right people is his thing.

“He is fully aware Ashworth and Berrada know better than he does whether Ten Hag is right for Manchester United.

“Transforming how major decisions are made is really what he is there for.”

EURO PAPER TALK: Mason Greenwood the bait as Man Utd plan swap for world-class duo; Edwards sent warning on dream Liverpool target

Man Utd pick Thomas Frank over Gareth Southgate

In the event Ashworth and Berrada do decide to go in a new direction, a separate report from Football Transfers has poured cold water on claims England boss Gareth Southgate will be Ten Hag’s replacement.

Instead, they state it’s Brentford manager Thomas Frank who has been installed as the club’s No 1 choice by default.

Real Madrid’s Carlo Ancelotti is the dream target, though having recently signed a new contract in Madrid that ties him down until 2026, acquiring Ancelotti is deemed unfeasible.

READ MORE: Five Gareth Southgate alternatives analysed as Ratcliffe reflects on Ten Hag future

Frank has therefore been earmarked for Ten Hag’s spot if United do make a change. The report claims whether the Dutchman is fired in the summer is currently a ’50/50 decision.’

Frank, 50, has earned rave reviews for the magnificent work he’s done with the Bees. The Dane not only guided Brentford into the Premier League for the first time, but wasted no time establishing them as an established top flight side.

The attacking brand of football he deploys along with his excellent track reckon with developing rising stars were also highlighted in the piece.

Frank is among the outsiders to replace Jurgen Klopp at Anfield. He has admirers within the Reds, though Bayer Leverkusen’s Xabi Alonso is the preferred target and Sporting’s Ruben Amorim appears to be the back-up.

DON’T MISS: Liverpool ecstatic as Ratcliffe pulls Man Utd out of race for dazzling forward, with different star wanted