Erik ten Hag admits he will ‘never’ implement Ajax style of play at Manchester United

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Erik ten Hag admits he will ‘never’ implement Ajax style of play at Manchester United
Manchester United v Galatasaray A.S.: Group A - UEFA Champions League 2023/24
Erik ten Hag is under increasing pressure (Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images (Credits: Getty Images)

Erik ten Hag has admitted he will ‘never’ be able to implement an Ajax style of play at Manchester United.

The Dutchman joined United from Ajax in April 2022, though his contract started four months later.

After spells with Jose Mourinho, Louis van Gaal and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, United wanted to hire a manager with a forward-thinking philosophy to play on the front foot.

Ten Hag enjoyed an impressive debut campaign at Old Trafford, where he blended the philosophy that saw him succeed at Ajax with United’s traditional counter-attacking style.

However, the Dutchman was expected to be firmer in his approach this season following the signings of Andre Onana, Mason Mount and Rasmus Hojlund.

Manchester United Training Session And Press Conference - UEFA Champions League 2023/24
Ten Hag has lost seven matches this term (Photo by Charlotte Tattersall/Getty Images)

But, if anything, United look further away from the type of team that many expected Ten Hag to produce.

And the Dutchman has explained why he will ‘never’ introduce an Ajax style of play at Old Trafford.

Asked when he could introduce that style of play, Ten Hag said: ‘Never. We will never play that football. Because those were different players.

‘This is also not why I came here. We are playing different football than I showed at Ajax because I have to, because I can’t play the same way.”

‘The players decide how you play. Ajax has a very typical and characteristic style of play, with Manchester United I will always show different football, I did so last year as well.

‘We play much more direct football here because I have the players for that here.’

MORE : Erik ten Hag has no regrets over ‘reckless’ Mason Mount substitution during Manchester derby defeat

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