Gary Neville reacts to Manchester United appointing Erik ten Hag as new manager
Manchester United legend Gary Neville has reacted to the Red Devils appointing Erik ten Hag as the club’s new manager.
The Dutchman will take over the reins at Old Trafford when Ajax’s season draws to a close. The Dutch giants, who are four points clear at the top of Eredivisie, play their last match of the season on May 15.
United’s last game of the season comes a week later when we travel to Crystal Palace.
The 52-year-old has a huge rebuild job on his hands and he will no doubt be eager to implement his methods and stamp his imprint on the club as soon as possible.
Neville who stated Manchester United were a “broken” football club after Tuesday’s 4-0 hammering against Liverpool at Anfield has spoken on Sky Sports about his thoughts on the appointment.
While not getting carried away, the former England international hopes the club’s fifth permanent manager since Sir Alex Ferguson retired can be the man to get Manchester United back to where it belongs.
The pundit said: “I wouldn’t say excitement because of the mood we’re in at the moment as Manchester United.
“But come the end of the season, there will be a lot of outgoings and a group of new signings which always bring excitement, then hopefully a manager who can get the side playing with pride again.
“It’s difficult at this stage to get excited, but in pre-season there will be that feeling. There will be excitement but I don’t quite feel it at this moment in time because of how bad United currently are.
“Erik ten Hag is the man of the moment and the overwhelming choice of the fans.”
Neville has stated what he believes the club’s new boss needs to focus on instilling.
The 47-year-ols said: “Erik ten Hag has got to get a group of players who believe in him, he believes in them, the fans believe.
“He has got to get his recruitment phase right. He has to show his belief in the club and the traditions of the club but also bringing his own way.
“The style of play, spirit, energy, at the moment I’ve never seen a players showing a lack of appetite as those ones did.
“I’m sure the club have told him they want to get into the Champions League, but it’ll be what happens over a 3-4 year period.”
Neville backed ten Hag adding a familiar face with a Manchester United background to his coaching staff, but he isn’t putting any pressure on the man who worked with Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich, and compared United’s rebuild to what Jurgen Klopp had with Liverpool.
The former right-back added: “Ten Hag will want to fill that role and I would welcome it. Brian Kidd had that role with Pep Guardiola for many years. We’ve seen it with other managers too.
“I wouldn’t put much pressure on ten Hag to win a trophy in his first season or two, that would be overachieving for me.
“It took Klopp 4-5 years to win a league title, as great a job as he has done and United are a million miles away from that. It has all collapsed this season and I don’t know why that has happened.
“Year 3,4,5 is when you start looking at him to win trophies.
Manchester United have been searching for a permanent manager since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked in November the day after losing 4-1 against Watford.
Michael Carrick was placed in caretaker charge for three games against Villarreal, Chelsea and Arsenal before Ralf Rangnick was appointed as interim boss until the end of the season.