'We have to play in the Champions League' - Erik ten Hag not accepting failure in Man Utd top-four hunt this season

Erik ten Hag Manchester United 2022-23Getty
  • Ten Hag insists Man Utd need UCL
  • Club missed out last season
  • Says United's pull is still strong without being in competition

WHAT HAPPENED? Ten Hag has enjoyed considerable success at Old Trafford since joining in the summer of 2022, leading the club to its first silverware since 2016 as well as a European quarter-final and an FA Cup semi-final. However, he will not be satisfied unless they reach the Champions League next season.

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WHAT HE SAID: "Let's make one thing clear, we have to play Champions League football," Ten Hag said when asked about offering new signings the opportunity to play in Europe's elite competition. "A club like Manchester United has to play in the Champions League. So there is no misunderstanding.

"Of course, we are more interesting when we are in the Champions League, but when we are not, we are still attractive for players. I have noticed that last year when we were not in the Champions League but I want to make my point clear, we have to be in the Champions League."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Ten Hag alluded to United's pull even without Champions League football, citing the signing of Casemiro last summer as an example, but he is insistent that the club needs to return to the competition. United can still qualify by finishing in the Premier League's top four, or by winning the Europa League.


Erik ten Hag Manchester United 2022-23GettyCasemiro Manchester United 2022-23Getty

WHAT NEXT FOR MAN UNITED? United's bid to finish in the top-four restarts on April 2 as they travel to Newcastle, with the Magpies also looking to end their absence from the competition. They then face Brentford on April 5 as they look to exorcise some demons from earlier this season.

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