Manchester United have been informed that they are appointing a “control freak” in Erik ten Hag, with Daley Blind – who has worked under the Red Devils’ new boss at Ajax – backing a demanding character to deliver tangible success at Old Trafford.
The Premier League heavyweights are crying out for inspiration from somewhere, having endured another barren season, and hope their latest change in the dugout will help to free them from what has become a serious rut.
Ralf Rangnick was only able to deliver a sixth-place finish as interim coach in 2021-22, with the managerial baton now being passed to a Dutch tactician that arrives in English football with a reputation for getting what he wants when it comes to complete commitment from his players and regular bids for silverware.
What qualities will Ten Hag bring to Man Utd?
Netherlands international Blind, who spent four years with United between 2014 and 2018, believes a man he savoured Eredivisie title success alongside last season will bring fun and focus to Old Trafford, telling the Red Devils’ of their latest appointment: “He's really social.
“I think, also in Ajax, he knows everyone at the club is important. Everyone needs to be involved to get that winning feeling, that winning mentality.
“Everyone is needed pointing in the same direction. He is aware of that and wants to keep everything close. He's also a control freak and wants to be on top of everything. I think that's a special quality you need to have when being that good.”
Will Ten Hag win a trophy at Man Utd?
Jose Mourinho was the last man to deliver a major honour for United – with the Portuguese having won the Community Shield, League Cup and Europa League back in 2016-17 – and the hope is that Ten Hag can get one of the most decorated sides in world football back on the trophy trail.
Blind is backing his former coach to deliver on that remit, adding when asked to predict when a barren run on that front could come to a close: “I won't burn my hands on that but I think the most important thing is that the team puts out a playing style and people can see that back on the pitch.
“I think, if that's going to happen, then winning will become more easy. From winning, you win trophies. When this happens, I don't know.
“I know this manager has the quality and I hope he gets the time to put everything his way and makes sure the team plays how he wants. I am confident he will be successful.”
Ten Hag won six trophies during his time in charge at Ajax, with three Eredivisie titles collected alongside two KNVB Cup successes and a Johan Cruyff Shield triumph.