Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Man Utd poised to ‘finalise’ Ten Hag appointment, as reasons why Pochettino was snubbed emerge

Erik Ten Hag, Ajax manager, addressess the media in a press conference - soon to be Man Utd boss

Man Utd have settled on appointing Erik Ten Hag as their next manager after a report revealed why he has been chosen to lead their rebuild ahead of Mauricio Pochettino.

The Red Devils are once again at a crossroads in the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era. Ralf Rangnick was drafted in to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer mid-season, though the veteran German was only entrusted with an interim role.

Rangnick previously made his name behind the scenes in sporting director roles and his time at the managerial helm at Old Trafford has been a disappointment.

Rangnick will take up a consultancy role when the campaign concludes, paving the way for a new, permanent manager to take the reins.

Now, according to ESPN, that man will be Ajax boss Erik ten Hag.

The Dutchman had emerged as one of the two leading candidates to land the role alongside PSG’s Mauricio Pochettino.

The outlet state Spanish pair Luis Enrique and Julien Lopetegui were also considered, but it was Ten Hag and Pochettino that led the way.

The pair had both been in contact with United’s hierarchy in recent weeks, with Ten Hag’s interview in particular deemed a positive one.

ESPN now state the 52-year-old is ready to make the step up with Manchester United ‘set to finalise’ his appointment as their next manager.

The article cites source from both England and the Netherlands and claims United chiefs Richard Arnold and Joel Glazer preferred Ten Hag over Pochettino.

The ex-Spurs manager did reportedly have his backers, though it’s detailed why Ten Hag was favoured.

PSG failings, finances all contribute towards Ten Hag cause

PSG’s premature exit in the Champions League reportedly did Pochettino no favours. The French side spurned a two-goal lead when capitulating in dramatic fashion against Real Madrid.

That led to mass fan unrest, with star players Neymar and Lionel Messi both being heckled by the Parisian fans – along with Pochettino. The fear of appointing a manager who some may believe failed in his last role also reportedly played a part.

Furthermore, the issue of finances is stated. PSG were reportedly holding out for a £15m compensation package. In contrast, Ten Hag will set United back just £1.7m to free him from his Ajax contract.

It’s noted former United assistant coach Rene Meulensteen is one option being considered to become Ten Hag’s assistant. Meulensteen held that role at United under Ferguson between 2007-13.

Adding further fuel to the fire is the claim the club’s recruitment team have now been told to compile shortlists of players to present to Ten Hag.

The Telegraph’s Jason Burt added his weight to the story. He tweeted United are ‘closing in’ on Ten Hag’s appointment with things now ‘moving fast’. Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano also echoed many of the sentiments in ESPN’s story.