Ten Hag would have preferred to keep Manchester United announcement secret, say Dutch press

Erik ten Hag’s appointment by Manchester United went from being a pipe dream last November, to reality in mid-April.

By time Ten Hag’s appointment was made official, it had become an open secret, and the confirmation came as a mercy for Ajax.

The uncertainty had become a problem for Ajax, who had lost the KNVB Cup Final, and former PSV boss Huub Stevens has urged Ten Hag to be open and honest about what is going on, and provide some clarity.

Less than 24 hours later the deal was announced. But if Ten Hag had it his way, this would not have been the case.

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According to Voetball International, Ten Hag’s preference would have been to keep the agreement a secret.

But as he has learned already, where Manchester United are concerned, keeping a secret is impossible, and he had to reluctantly agree to get it all out in the open, for everybody’s sakes.

The Dutch magazine wrote: “Erik ten Hag would have preferred to keep it quiet until Sunday 15 May, when Ajax plays its last game of the season at Vitesse. But there was no stopping the Ajax coach. 

“In recent weeks, Ten Hag received a crash course in lines, rumors and factual news in the English media. When he recently reached an oral agreement with Manchester United, it was not much later in all the media in England, and soon the Netherlands. 

“Anyone who knows the character of control freak and perfectionist Ten Hag knows that he would have preferred to have been in control of this himself.”

Photo by Broer van den Boom/BSR Agency/Getty Images

Announcement best for everybody

With respect to Ten Hag, Manchester United supporters could not have waited until mid-May. With the team putting us through the wringer on a weekly basis, the Dutchman’s appointment has given us all a much-needed ray of light.

Ajax could really be the big winners. They were at a moment where they needed some clarity, and the whispers around Ten Hag have now settled down, as everybody knows where he stands.

Voetball International reports he is determined to end the season in style for Ajax, and he can concentrate on this, rather than expending energy sweating over trying to keep the biggest secret in football.

And as the report pointed out, the news had long leaked over his imminent appointment, with The Telegraph reporting it was ’99 per cent done’ a week before it was announced.

This really forced his hand, and while in an ideal scenario from Ten Hag’s perspective, a secret may have been possible, ‘his crash course’ on how quickly a story takes hold, is an interesting welcome to life at Manchester United, before it has even begun.

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