Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Ten Hag names three vital Man Utd summer transfers as Scholes reacts to Dutchman’s stay

Erik ten Hag will stay on as Manchester United manager

Erik ten Hag will stay on as Manchester United manager

Erik ten Hag will have a hugely-restrictive summer budget of just £35m to strengthen his Manchester United squad this summer amid claims he has told the club the three signings they MUST must make, and with Paul Scholes offering his thoughts on the Dutchman’s stay.

The Red Devils spent multiple weeks dwelling on the Dutchman’s future after an indifferent season resulted in a lowly eighth-place finish that witnessed a Premier League low of 14 defeats along the way, coupled with an utterly-shambolic Champions League campaign. However, Manchester United then salvaged some wreckage from their season by saving their best until last in winning the FA Cup and denying Manchester City the chance of claiming a double Double.

Going into that Wembley showdown, Ten Hag had been hampered by strong reports claiming the axe would fall on his reign regardless of the outcome in the cup final. However, United produced a brilliant display that was comfortably their best performance of the season that not only proved the 54-year-old could compete against the best, but that – when required – he could get a performance from his players.

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Nonetheless, it took well over a fortnight for United to make clear that Ten Hag would be allowed to continue in the role into a third season, with the news breaking on Tuesday evening that the club would not only stand by their manager but would also be negotiating an extension to his current arrangement.

TEAMtalk understands that the cup final win – his second trophy in two seasons for the club, making him the joint-most decorated United manager alongside Jose Mourinho since Sir Alex Ferguson’s exit – and the manner of it, was effectively the main ingredient that kept him in his job.

Ten Hag stays: Scholes reacts to Man Utd standing by their manager

Clearly, however, improvements will need to be made by the United boss in his third season and qualifying for the Champions League again, courtesy of a top-four finish or via winning the Europa League, will be the minimum requirement next time around.

After finishing eighth, though, surely the only way is up, especially when considering the off-field obstacles Ten Hag was forced to overcome. The ongoing takeover saga, together with a prolonged row with Jadon Sancho  -and the division it caused within the squad – will not have helped.

As a result, legendary United midfielder Scholes believes the only way is up for Ten Hag and United and he was quick to applaud INEOS’s decision to stand by their man.

However, the 11-time Premier League winner is adamant the club’s supporters deserve better.

“Nice to wake up to this news although I did think Palace away felt like the end…,” Scholes said in a now-deleted message on his Instagram stories.

“Major improvements needed but at least we have a bit of continuity and don’t have to wait for a new regime to settle in…

“Fans have given him and the players incredible support and deserve better next season.”

Another legendary figure, Nemanja Vidic, has also been impressed by Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s regime so far.

“I think the approach of Sir Jim Ratcliffe, I like that approach. Obviously he’s going slowly, he’s not making decisions just with a gut feeling,’ the former defender told Sky Sports.

“I think he wants to create a group of people that will be in charge of different departments. Manchester United is a big club with different departments, you have to have a good relationship with those departments.

“I hope he is going to choose the right people and obviously take the time until Manchester United becomes again what we all expect it to be.

“I believe Sir Jim, with his knowledge, not just with the sport but as a businessman, I think he’s very successful and he knows how leadership is important.”

Ten Hag targets three major Man Utd signings

With Ten Hag being given support to continue in the role, it’s understood that he will try and retain an element of power of the club’s transfer business – something for which the Dutchman has been badly criticised for in the past.

However, Ratcliffe is keen to pass that authority over to the club’s incoming new sporting director Dan Ashworth, together with the already-installed technical director Jason Wilcox.

As a result, it remains to be seen just how much control or how much of a say Ten Hag will retain going forwards.

Nonetheless, TEAMtalk understands he has recommended to the club the three signings he needs to transform the club’s fortunes, with a new centre-half, a central midfield partner for Kobbie Mainoo and a new centre forward to compete with Rasmus Hojlund and offer the club a Plan B in attack, his three main priorities.

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To that end, discussions will be held in the coming days over which players to target, though TEAMtalk correspondent Rudy Galetti has revealed Ten Hag has requested United make a concrete move for a much-coveted French duo.

That said, The Times writes that Ten Hag will be granted a summer transfer budget of just £35m as a starting point, though funds can be further generated by some player sales. To that end, the club are seemingly ready to cash in on a number of players no longer seen as essential to Ten Hag, with offers likely to be considered for Casemiro, Christian Eriksen, Victor Lindelof, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Scott McTominay, Jadon Sancho, Mason Greenwood and Facundo Pellistri to name eight.

As a result, Ten Hag’s actual summer kitty could ultimately prove far higher than initially expected, though much will depend on both the cash-flow of funds – and subsequent sale of aforementioned stars – as well as his ability to negotiate the best deals possible for United.