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'Good is not good enough' - Ten Hag vows to raise standards at Manchester United after dire campaign

11:36 BST 23/05/2022
Erik ten Hag
The Dutchman is determined to transform the Red Devils back into an elite force after an impressive five-year stint at Ajax

Erik ten Hag has vowed to raise standards at Manchester United after the club's dire 2021-22 campaign.

Man Utd confirmed Ten Hag as their new permanent manager in April, and he officially replaced interim boss Ralf Rangnick following the club's final game of the season on Sunday.

The former Ajax boss was in attendance at Selhurst Park as the Red Devils suffered a 1-0 loss to Crystal Palace which compounded a miserable year that has seen them fall to sixth in the Premier League, and he is well aware of the size of the task at Old Trafford.

Ten Hag's promise to United fans

"First, accept the current situation but also know one year ago, this club, this team was second in the Premier League," Ten Hag has said in his first official interview as Man Utd head coach on MUTV.

"There's potential and now it's up to us to get that out. It's a process, it will take time but I'm convinced we will come to that point where we get success. We have to work hard and it has to be based on the right philosophy and strategy."

The Dutchman wants the Red Devils to get back to playing "fantastic football" and says he will demand the absolute maximum from every member of his squad.

'We want to make the fans proud," he said. "Second, of course we are in this moment, the current situation is obviously not that good. 

"It's a big challenge. I want to build and construct a team who are battling for each other, who are unified and who will get results. 

"Also we are playing in the Theatre of Dreams. We want to entertain - but in the end, the intention is to play fantastic football. If we can't play fantastic football, we still have to win.

"I have high expectations from myself and that is also what I demand from my squad. They have to co-operate together and they have to give every day their best. I would say, for me, good is not good enough. We have to do better."

Ten Hag planning to follow Ajax blueprint

Ten Hag delivered six trophies during his five-year stay at Ajax, including three Eredivisie titles, and also guided the club to the 2018-19 Champions League semi-finals.

The 52-year-old stuck to Ajax's core values as he implemented an entertaining playing style based on high pressing and dominating possession, with impressive results, and he is planning to take the same approach in Manchester.

"The way we did it – with dominant, dictating football – that is the way I want to act in Man United as well," Ten Hag added. "But finally the competence and the quality of the people – so the players – decide how you have to play."

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