Erik ten Hag has put himself under huge pressure after ‘scaring’ Cristiano Ronaldo’s team

The Dutchman made some interesting comments after his Ajax side knocked European powerhouses Real Madrid out of the Champions League with an emphatic away win in 2019

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Erik ten Hag in profile as Man Utd ‘open talks’ with Ajax boss

Eric ten Hag is getting closer and closer to being appointed Managing Director of Manchester United as well as the lengthy search for a permanent successor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer nears its end.

former RB Leipzig Manager Ralph Rangnik has been at the helm on an interim basis since December last year, but has not brought about any significant turnaround in earnings. Ten Hag is held in high esteem by the United hierarchy and Mirror Football understand he has reached a verbal agreement with the Red Devils to take over after the end of this season.

Though expected soon in the red half of Manchester, he has big plans when it comes to the man running things on the blue side. Ten Hag worked closely with him Manchester City boss pep Guardiola while the couple were both at Bayern Munich, where the former took over the reserve side. More notably, the Dutchman once compared his own style of play to Guardiola’s.

While some sections of United faithful might not be thrilled with the idea of ​​their manager basing his philosophy on the beliefs of their bitter rivals’ boss, Guardiola’s success at City has been nothing short of remarkable, and if Ten Hag could achieve even half of it while he was is at United he will go down a hero on the terraces of Old Trafford.

Ten Hag’s most notable feat to date is arguably the fact that he brought a young Ajax close to the 2019 Champions League final, only to be beaten in the last minute by a Spurs winner in Amsterdam. Two rounds earlier, the Dutch team eliminated Spanish titans Real Madrid.

After losing 2-1 at home to Los Blancos, chances were slim for Ten Hag’s side as they rolled into the Santiago Bernabeu. 90 minutes later they had just rioted and beat the then Santiago Solari side 4-1 at home.

Cristiano Ronaldo was frustrated after Erik ten Hags Ajax eliminated his Juventus side

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In the next round they saw Cristiano Ronaldo draw juventus – another draw that would see Ajax as massive underdogs. Once again they got another header after a 2-1 win in Turin.

Ten Hag told reporters after the game: “I think it was an incredible night for Ajax, the players and Dutch football as a whole Champions League Favourites, as with our philosophy we can push our limits and we have done it again. You could see Juve were a bit scared of us and that too real Madrid.”

The 52-year-old praised his own tactics and the players tasked with executing them. “It’s very difficult to play against our style of football because we have very technical players and it’s difficult to put too much pressure on ourselves. Even in defence, only we know how to play this variable pressing game.”

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After beating Juventus, Ten Hag found out about the potential opponents awaiting his side in the next round. It was a case of both Tottenham or Man City in the last four and Ten Hag added: “Pep Guardiola has a pretty similar philosophy to mine. If we play like we did against Real Madrid and Juventus then we should be confident against both teams too.”

Ten Hag never had a chance to hold their own against Guardiola as City found themselves at the wrong end of another shock defeat in Europe to their colleague First League lateral spurs.

Unfortunately, the fairytale run ended in the semi-finals when Ajax’s hearts were broken by Lucas Moura’s late winner. Ten Hag will be hoping for better luck on the European stage with United but the Red Devils must first qualify – which is by no means a guarantee.

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Continue reading Erik ten Hag has put himself under huge pressure after 'scaring' Cristiano Ronaldo's team

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