Breaking Hag - The Erik ten Hag Thread

Discussion in 'Manchester United' started by Sofabloke, Apr 21, 2022.

  1. Sofabloke

    Sofabloke Member+

    Dec 24, 2003
    Mu
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Agree with the above.

    Playing a high-line, pressing high and working hard off the ball the chase it down and press are clearly the tactics any top three EPL team needs to employ.

    We have a number of players who do not have either the mobility, workrate or mentality required to do that consistently in the EPL at the top level such as Sancho, Rashford, Martial, Maguire and some players that don't have the legs anymore Varane, Casemiro, Eriksen.

    These need replacing first whoever the manager is.

    Then we also have some players that are just not at this level, Lindelof, AWB, McT, Antony. These initially need to be just subs, but ultimately will need replacing too further down the line.

    Shaw is probably done owing to injuries and Malacia has not really shown enough to determine that he is MUQ.

    We are at least two summer windows away from being properly back at the races. At least with EtH we have someone who should know which players are not up to the task.

    Pretty much any manager can make us better by going back to 4-2-3-1 - ie sticking to midfielders in front of our back four and telling them to sit. Then have the team play in a mid-block or low-block depending on the oppo. Southgate or Potter probably start here.

    However that is mid-table team tactics that at best will get you 4th, but may have you more around 5th / 6th as an average.

    So the bigger question (for Ineos) is who are we? Are you prepared for the outlay required in players to get us to be a high-pressing / high-line team? Because no manager (Mou, Ole, Ralf, EtH) has been able to manage that with a base of the likes of Maguire, AWB, McT etc.
     
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  2. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    So the players are revolting for the 4th manager in a row? Cool, it’s definitely not the players to blame, that’s for sure.
     
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  3. Chaz Striker

    Chaz Striker Member+

    Jul 26, 2005
    Denver
    James said it last summer, if you’re going to be a hard ass disciplinarian, you better make sure you don’t play favorites and you have your own house in order.
     
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  4. Sofabloke

    Sofabloke Member+

    Dec 24, 2003
    Mu
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    More importantly need support of the (new) higher ups.

    For example if they sack EtH but then also keep Sancho for next season, we know player power isnt over and the next manager ultimately inherits the same problems (after a season or so honeymoon period).
     
  5. Ruud v.Nistelrooy 10

    Staff Member

    Jamaica
    Jun 4, 2006
    Antilla
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Jamaica
    i don't know about anyone else, but i watch the games and what i see out there isn't players who've given up.

    granted, they tend to wilt fairly often when things don't go their way and when the team recovers it usually requires the opposition not finishing the team off AND some kind of error(s). also, they're not intense players for the most part.

    what i see out there is a system and plan that doesn't work and is hindering players. i also see a refusal to change.

    if Casemiro isn't cutting it then why not use Amrabat who was touted as the midfield saviour or Eriksen for more control and put legs around him? i'm not even going to touch the man management off the field bit or the nepotism.

    the player excuse while valid at times can only go so far. especially when other managers like Solskjær never looked this open or bad and he was doing it with McTominay + Fred and Lindelöf + Maguire
     
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  6. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    I agree to an extent that the players are probably frustrated playing a style that isn't working. That's fair. The past few weeks the players have shown fight at times, but a handful have shown little to no effort. My problem is the group we've had for years now are incapable to keeping quiet and working hard, regardless of if they agree with the tactics. They have to bitch to their agents or leak it. Just shut the ******** up and work.

    As for ETH, I agree that his time is probably up. Unlike some of the other post Fergie managers, I actually think given time ETH could turn this around. But in this current era, at a team like United, you aren't allowed to be this bad without showing signs of improvement or signs of building towards a certain style. The style ETH seems to be set on is something that's not sustainable. I still think he feels forced to play this way given the deficiencies in our squad, but this shit obviously isn't working. I think given the choice, ETH would gut a majority of this squad. But he hasn't built up enough good faith for the owners to sanction him selling/replacing everyone he needs.

    We've all said this a million times, but I don't think any manager makes a measurable improvement with the current squad and setup. It won't be until we have a decent structure and way better recruitment that we actually have any semblance of sustained success. My hesitancy in asking for ETH to go is because I don't think we replace him with anyone noticeably better, there's a good chance we replace him with someone noticeably worse, and it just pushes off the axing of a lot of guys that the current manager knows need to go but a new manager will give time to evaluate.

    But whatever, let's enter the 6th rebuild in the past 10 years and see if something new happens this time. I don't have much faith but hopefully the new structure elicits new results.
     
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  7. CybrSlydr

    CybrSlydr Member+

    Columbus Crew
    United States
    Jun 30, 2013
    Casper, WY
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    You see what you want to see. We all do.
     
  8. Ruud v.Nistelrooy 10

    Staff Member

    Jamaica
    Jun 4, 2006
    Antilla
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Jamaica
    so you're saying you see a viable system and plan that just needs different players then?
     
  9. CybrSlydr

    CybrSlydr Member+

    Columbus Crew
    United States
    Jun 30, 2013
    Casper, WY
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm saying I see a team that's given up and fails to do even the basics. That's not a "lack of system" fault. I see a bunch of overpaid, shithouse players sacking another manager.
     
  10. Chaz Striker

    Chaz Striker Member+

    Jul 26, 2005
    Denver
    He's only been a fan since 2012. He's just feeling the constant turnover more deeply than the rest of us. Honestly, the only reason I would let ETH stay is the terrible prospect of some English dickhead being hired. But fear is the mind killer. Can't make decisions based on fear.
     
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  11. benni...

    benni... BigSoccer Supporter

    Nov 23, 2004
    Chocolate City
    The system is shit. Look at our pressing system. Watching it, is enough to see its more of a ETH problem than a players saying ******** it.

    Also, if you lot are gonna blame our defense on our our CB's sitting too deep, then why wont ETH replace them? Willy, Lindelof, Varance are all comfortable playing a high line. We had two other youth defenders who were better than Willy and they both got loaned and sold.
     
  12. Sofabloke

    Sofabloke Member+

    Dec 24, 2003
    Mu
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Whatever way you cut it, we have seen this cycle before with Ole - limited success with a mid / low block and two deep CMs.

    For the sake of progression tried to move to a front-foot pressing team with a higher line, not supported by recruitment and it failed.

    They killed it for Ole by not signing the CM he wanted to replace McFred and signing old Ronaldo. They killed it for Erik by not signing the CB he wanted and injuries meaning he backslided to Maguire & McT (who he tried to ditch and they wouldnt sell).

    When they sack Erik and bring in Southgate or Potter (who will initially revert to mid-block 4-2-3-1 or similar) watch us squeak 4th place, everyone declare that a mild success then everyone says we need to move to a 4-3-3 high-press to compete for the top 3.

    Also if you play kids like Mainoo, Garnacho and Kambwala can really complain about mistakes (that littered the last game from WK and AG especially for the goals).

    Rinse and repeat.
     
  13. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Replace our defense with who? We've had like 4 fit defenders at any given time this season. The back fours have picked themselves basically on availability.

    We can play a high line with Varane, Martinez, Dalot, and Shaw and that's about it. Lindelof isn't comfortable playing a high line, he's afraid of his own shadow. I've rarely seen a CB given more buffer space than Lindelof. Maguire we all know can't. Willy has the ability but maybe not the confidence or football IQ yet. Asking him to play a high line is asking a lot. AWB doesn't scan for shit and is just asking for diagonals in behind. Evans actually doesn't a decent job because he's a smart defender but if he gets caught out he's ********ed due to pace.

    I'm not giving ETH excuses, but if our press has failed because the defends sits back and leaves a gap behind the midfield press, it would make sense as to why. We don't have the personnel to play that way. The question then falls on ETH as to why he's still trying when the guys fit clearly can't do it.
     
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  14. Ruud v.Nistelrooy 10

    Staff Member

    Jamaica
    Jun 4, 2006
    Antilla
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Jamaica
    this is why myself and others have said about making do and utilising what you have and at least why i don't buy the Martínez argument.

    OK ten Hag didn't get his CB but that's life in football. instead of the board not sanctioning, it could have been injury, the player saying no, FFP, someone else signing the player etc. no one gets a free run at good players. sometimes you will have to adapt.

    him not getting that CB and injuries that are always going to be there should result in a mess this bad. likewise Martínez who he could have given more time off to fully recover. if one player makes this much of a difference then lord help us.

    besides, Solskjær also didn't get what he wanted but he didn't concede shots by the dozen, and he made about the same cup finals as ten Hag + a UEL final where we unfortunately shat the bed. he also had a counter attacking style that yielded a good return of goals regularly

    ====

    agree on the kids part which is why i don't complain about them. if everyone else was doing their job they should only get the odd game here and there. Garnacho is our joint 2nd top scorer and 2nd in goal involvements at 19. what a burden to place on the kid but very good on him for delivering
     
  15. Sofabloke

    Sofabloke Member+

    Dec 24, 2003
    Mu
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    I am actually less concerned about the manager but more concerned about what happens with recruitment in the summer.

    What ever we do we need the Chief Exec / DoF / Tech Director to be aligned with the manager. I think we will finally get that now we have football people in those positions.

    Big question for me is will that be around a Southgate / Potter style mid-block with two defensive mids. Very mid-table ultimately.

    Or will this be around a high-line, high-pressing team with EtH or a replacement who can play the way a top 3 team needs to play (ie Pep / Klopp / Arteta ball).

    This season and the current performances from these players is a bit of a sideshow to be honest. Nothing good happens until some of these are replaced.

    The bigger issue is the above - which direction are they (Ineos) intending to take us. The manager is a consequence of that.
     
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  16. Chaz Striker

    Chaz Striker Member+

    Jul 26, 2005
    Denver
    Fire him right before the fa cup final and give us a new manager bump to win it…
     
  17. Ruud v.Nistelrooy 10

    Staff Member

    Jamaica
    Jun 4, 2006
    Antilla
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Jamaica
    i don't mind 2 defensive mids as long as it works.

    my worry is that FFP shackles anything we try to do. i'm pretty sure new owner funds don't affect restrictions
     
  18. Sofabloke

    Sofabloke Member+

    Dec 24, 2003
    Mu
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Depends what you mean by “works”. A system with 2 defensive mids is what teams outside the top 3 do (typically mid-block) - so means we are aiming for 4th / 5th / 6th.

    Southgate & Potter are the managers if this is the level of ambition - as is what they would do. Also likely means keeping Maguire and finding a full-back who can do the “Walker role” of running back to save his ass.

    Not really looking forward to watching that type of football tbh.

    In fact what Ineos chose to do with Maguire will signal a lot given he is soon to be in final year I think. If he goes there may be hope.
     
  19. SF19

    SF19 Member+

    Jun 8, 2013
  20. Ruud v.Nistelrooy 10

    Staff Member

    Jamaica
    Jun 4, 2006
    Antilla
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    Jamaica
  21. benni...

    benni... BigSoccer Supporter

    Nov 23, 2004
    Chocolate City
    Lindelof might be pussy, but he can defend a high line. He's mobile.

    I also addressed this in the thread when replying to Sofa last week. It doesnt mattter how high or low your line is when your structure is ********ed. I already gave the example of how our wingers press outside to in and the opponent [every ********ing time] bounces the ball off of one if their CM's to the open wing back.

    Even if we played a higher line, that fullback is always open and our fullback on that side is already occupied by a winger. Other teams play a single pivot when they press like that, and then one of the two 8's would shuffle over. We play with a 10 and the two 8's are too far apart to shuffle.
     
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  22. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Fair enough. Although I still disagree on Lindelof. Physical he can play a high line but his first instinct is always to retreat and that's a problem if you have a CB not fully committing to the high line.
     
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  23. SF19

    SF19 Member+

    Jun 8, 2013
    Apologies if re-post, but it's a very good read. Covers a lot @topbloke has hammered on for sometime.

    https://theathletic.com/5328427/2024/03/13/man-utd-shots-faced/

    The standout part is about how teams easily beat our press. Both Ange and de Zerbi figured us out in short time at the start of the season: widen the space between the CBs. There's a great picture here of de Zerbi showing Dunk what to do after 20 minutes into the early season game. Look at the smile on his face lol.

    [​IMG]
     
  24. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    It’s not hard to figure out. Have the midfield play between ours and our back line in that huge space and then it only take a pass or two to beat the high press and you have an odd man rush.
     
  25. MizzouMUFC

    MizzouMUFC Member+

    Apr 10, 2010
    Places
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nagelsmann just signed a new deal so take him off the already short list of viable options.
     

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