Ten Hag explains how Man Utd's extra Europa League play-off games gives them an 'advantage'

Ten Hag Man Utd 2022-23Getty Images
  • Man Utd in UEL play-off
  • Games give players chance to 'develop'
  • Could face Ajax, Barcelona or Juventus

WHAT HAPPENED? Despite beating Real Sociedad 1-0 on Thursday Manchester United finished second in their Europa League group and therefore face a play-off against one of the teams dropping out of the Champions League. It adds two extra games to an already packed season, but Ten Hag believes that it is a positive thing for his squad.

WHAT HE SAID: Speaking to the club's website after the win on Thursday night, Ten Hag said: “We definitely have two extra games to cover in this hard season. We have a lot of games, that’s clear, but also it’s an opportunity for this squad to develop and to get into the process. Players like to play matches, rather than training, so, in that matter, it is also an advantage.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The Europa League play-off will be by no means an easy task. United could draw one of Ajax, Barcelona, Bayer Leverkusen, Juventus or Sevilla who all failed to progress in the Champions League. Ties against RB Salzburg, Shakhtar Donetsk and Sporting Lisbon on paper look more favourable but all possess their own challenges.


Cristiano Ronaldo Man Utd 2022-23Getty ImagesTen Hag Man Utd 2022-23Getty Images

WHAT NEXT FOR MAN UNITED? Ten Hag's men face Aston Villa twice in a week, once in the Premier League and another in the Carabao Cup. They then take on Fulham in their final match before the World Cup break.

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