Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Ten Hag ordered to unleash Man Utd star who’s putting Haaland and Mbappe to shame

Man Utd manager Erik ten Hag

A former Manchester United treble winner has called on Erik ten Hag to give a marginalised player an extended run of games on the back of his miraculous goalscoring exploits.

It’s been feast or famine for the Red Devils in the early going this season, with each of their 11 contests thus far either ending in victory or defeat.

Man Utd have won five and lost six thus far, and their most recent encounter with Brentford could’ve produced the opposite outcome if not for the late heroics of Scott McTominay.

The Scotland international, 26, scored an injury-time brace to snatch all three points for United. The display rubberstamped McTominay as something of a goal threat on the back of his exploits for Scotland.

Indeed, while deployed in more of an advanced midfield role by Steve Clarke, McTominay has netted six times for his country in the qualification stage for Euro 2024.

McTominay’s six strikes put him level with Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland in the qualification phase. That’s quite the achievement given both of those players play up top and are widely regarded as two of the most lethal forwards in world football at present.

Now, in quotes carried by the Manchester Evening News, United treble winner, Andy Cole, has urged Ten Hag to unleash McTominay at club level.

Aside from his newfound goalscoring prowess, Cole also pointed to the fact McTominay will always give maximum effort to the cause as a reason why the Scot deserves an extend run in the team.

McTominay deserves a chance despite ‘limited’ claims – Cole

“I really do [believe he deserves a chance],” said Cole. “Scott gives you everything he’s got and that’s in spite of some people claiming that he’s limited in his abilities as a midfielder for United.

“One thing you do know about Scott is that he’s going to give you 150 per cent. In the position that United find themselves in right now, you need every player to be giving just everything they’ve got.

“To come off the bench against Brentford and score two crucial goals, as well scoring goals for fun at international level with Scotland, highlights that Scott’s clearly doing something right.

“I do believe that he needs to be given that opportunity at club level, where the manager gives him a run of games to allow him to showcase what he can do.”

Will McTominay be unleashed?

The biggest issue facing Ten Hag and McTominay is precisely where to deploy him.

Bruno Fernandes occupies the central role behind the striker and is often wasted if forced into deputising out wide.

McTominay could play alongside Casemiro in the double pivot and be given license to roam forward in a box-to-box role.

However, that could leave the aging Brazilian exposed if United turn the ball over while McTominay is venturing forward.

In any case, what is clear is McTominay does appear deserving of a run of games in United’s first team moving forwards. Whether he gets it and in what position is up to Ten Hag.

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