Ten Hag: United job is difficult but fantastic challenge

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Erik Ten Hag admits Manchester United job is difficult but a fantastic challenge for him as he is set to take charge of his final game at Ajax.

New Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag has stated that the job is difficult and also a fantastic challenge for him.

The Ajax manager made his first comment about his new job after he led the Dutch club to their third successive Eredivisie title.

Ten Hag will be leaving Ajax for Manchester United as he is set to take up the job permanently from interim manager Ralf Rangnick.

Manchester United have has a rough season as they are now out of the top four race in the Premier League and will miss out of the Champions League tournament next season.

“It feels like a challenge to put the club back on track of winning. The options are there, including financially,” he said in an interview with Voetbal International magazine on Thursday. “I’ve also got a good feeling about the people who are there, and that we can take a step in the direction.”

Ten Hag had previously refused to give answers to questions on United, but explained in the interview the recruitment process and what awaits him.

“I know United went through a very precise procedure. They’d done scouting, analyses, data, interviews with people who worked with me. Then we held multiple interviews.

“They didn’t rush into things and neither did I. It felt like a difficult, but fantastic challenge. At United, there’s something to build and something to win. Manchester United is such a big name in the history of football.

“It’s not for nothing they call Old Trafford the Theatre of Dreams. It’s a club with an allure in international football. Everyone knows their history. The history is impressive but I’ve also researched the present and future and the possibilities.”

Ten Hag insisted he fully focused on his job at Ajax when the rumour of the Old Trafford club was flying in the air and never let it impact his work in the final weeks at Ajax.

“Much had already leaked out and the questions kept coming. We made it public when everything was settled. In the first weeks [of negotiations], when the outside world got wind of it, there was really no agreement yet, while many assumed that the deal had been completed,” Ten Hag said.

At that time, Ajax were battling with rivals PSV Eindhoven for the league title.

“I was able to separate the interests of Manchester United and my work at Ajax,” Ten Hag added. “Ajax was never let down, not until the last day. She got all the attention the club needed. I always had matters well prepared and was completely focused on Ajax.”

Ten Hag will take charge of his last Eredivisie match with Ajax on Sunday away to Vitesse Arnhem.

 

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