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Erik ten Hag tells United to ‘grow up’ after conceding soft goals against Spurs | Manchester United

Erik ten Hag tells United to ‘grow up’ after conceding soft goals against Spurs | Manchester United
Erik ten Hag tells United to ‘grow up’ after conceding soft goals against Spurs | Manchester United


Erik ten Hag criticised his Manches­ter United players for not being “more man” at corners as his team twice let the lead slip in a 2-2 draw with Tottenham.

Goals from Rasmus Højlund and Marcus Rashford put United ahead on three and 40 minutes but ­Richarlison and Rodrigo Bentancur pegged the hosts back.

Richarlison’s header came from a corner at which Aaron Wan‑Bissaka lost the No 9, and from two more ­corners Diogo Dalot cleared a ­Bentancur attempt off the line and Cristian Romero hit the bar.

The game was the first attended by Sir Jim Ratcliffe since the Ineos ­owner’s 25% buy-in was announced. Ten Hag was asked what the 71‑year‑old had seen.

“He will have seen a team fighting for each other and trying to get a win,” the manager told Sky Sports. “He has seen two great goals on our side and also what he should have noticed is we should be more man when we have to defend corners.

“You have to grow up and be more physical, head the ball away. That shouldn’t happen. And the ­second [Spurs goal, from a break] was a ­typical one. We know the quick releases and then we allow them a diagonal pass and with one diagonal pass they break our whole team and that can’t happen.

“I am quite disappointed. When you go ahead twice and then concede two soft goals it is a bit frustrating, but you have to take it as it is.”

Ten Hag believed that a ­Destiny Udogie challenge in which he wrapped his arms around Alejandro Garnacho on 32 minutes should have been a penalty.

“Yes,” he said, “but what can you do? But I am used to it – all season that is the case. [At] Spurs was similar [in the defeat in the reverse fixture in August], a clear handball from Romero, and I can list a number more. At some point in the season I think it will turn to our side. Let’s hope for that.”

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This was the first game in which Højlund and Rashford both scored. Ten Hag said: “When the front ­players are not scoring it’s going through the whole team. It makes everyone insecure, starting with the front players. It makes them eager when they’re not scoring, they play with less confidence. Also in defending, every goal we concede is a problem.”

Ange Postecoglou was pleased, the Spurs manager saying: “I thought it was an outstanding ­performance.”



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