Erik ten Hag has given Isak Hansen-Aaroen a real gift after blocking him from linking up with his international team.
As reported by United.no, young midfielder Hansen-Aaroen was scheduled to be playing in the Under-19s European Championship Finals for Norway.
Normally it would be a blow for a young player to be blocked from playing an international tournament for his country. Erik ten Hag gave him something even better.
Isak Hansen-Aaroen takes chance
Erik ten Hag ensured the young player had an even better opportunity than representing his country. Instead he got to play for Manchester United… in his native Norway.
While Hansen-Aaroen used to play in Tromso, a near 22 hour drive from the Ullevaal Stadium in Oslo, playing in his homeland was still a very special moment.
The young midfielder played the second 45 minutes of the match against Leeds and had a decisive moment, providing the assist for Noam Emeran’s opening goal.
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Hansen-Aaroen’s defence-splitting pass was typical of his incisive, direct range of distribution, which helped Manchester United’s under-18s side to win the FA Youth Cup in 2022.
Now he is bringing it to the first team, helping a very young side to get the better of rivals Leeds.
The 18-year-old featured under Ten Hag in the winter friendlies in Spain too, and he is clearly a player the Dutch manager is intrigued in.
Ten Hag’s decision to keep the youngster around was a vote of confidence, and a challenge to the youngster. He has handled it well and shown the manager his faith was justified.
Playing and assisting for Manchester United in Norway is a moment Hansen-Aaroen will never forget, whatever lies ahead for him in the future..
Ten Hag praises youngsters
He told the club website: “They’re coming in and it’s a big moment when you are coming up in the squad, in the first team. You deserve game time because over long years you work for it.
“And then that moment in a very good and nice stadium, with a good crowd, and in such ambience they’re coming in and then score and win the game. That’s very good and nice.”