Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has ordered emergency one-to-one meetings with his misfiring players to mend an increasingly fractured dressing room, according to reports. The Dutchman is under ballooning pressure amid one of United’s worst-ever starts to a season, but he will fight to ensure his long-term project isn’t cut short.
United entered their last two fixtures against Manchester City and Newcastle United lacking confidence despite winning their previous three outings – albeit unconvincingly.
But not many could’ve predicted Ten Hag overseeing back-to-back 3-0 defeats at Old Trafford for the first time since October 1962.
Wednesday’s humiliation was made all the more startling by the fact Newcastle’s C team thrashed United with eight changes and no centre-backs or strikers.
The Red Devils lost just twice at home in Ten Hag’s maiden campaign, going unbeaten in 31 games before the 3-1 defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion in September.
But they’ve already lost five times in their opening 10 matches at Old Trafford this term for the first time since 1930.
Ten Hag urgently needs results, and he’s taking drastic steps to ensure they arrive in the coming weeks.
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According to The Sun, Ten Hag has called one-to-one sessions with his players to clear the air with any qualms they may have.
The former Ajax boss is said to be desperate to dock the sinking ship and become the first manager since Sir Alex Ferguson to pull United out of such a rut of results.
The report adds that Ten Hag wants each United player to openly discuss any issues with him, his staff, their team-mates and the current training regime.
They are claimed to be ongoing on Thursday and Friday ahead of Saturday’s crucial Premier League trip to Fulham at Craven Cottage.
Ten Hag was defiant after the Newcastle defeat, admitting he understood doubts about his credentials but insisting he was confident he would see his vision through.
“I understand it [doubts] when the results are not there. It is also a logical process that they are questioning that. But I am confident I can do it.
“At all my clubs, I have done it, and also last year here, I did it as well, but at this moment, we are in a bad place. I take responsibility for it. I see it as a challenge.
“I am a fighter, and I am in that fight, and I have to make sure that I share the responsibility with my players and that we stick together and fight together and get better results.”