Erik ten Hag hits out at officials after Manchester United lose at FC Copenhagen

'A season is long and at one point it will turn in our favour.'

Erik ten Hag hits out at officials after Manchester United lose at FC Copenhagen
F.C. Copenhagen v Manchester United: Group A - UEFA Champions League 2023/24
Erik ten Hag was left very disappointed with the officials in Copenhagen (Picture: Getty Images)

Erik ten Hag was left extremely disappointed with refereeing decisions in Manchester United’s thrilling 4-3 loss to FC Copenhagen, saying two goals should not have stood and Marcus Rashford should not have been sent off.

It was a wild night in Denmark, with United going 2-0 ahead early on and looking very good before Rashford was shown a straight red card shortly before half-time.

It took VAR to step in and lead to the England forward’s dismissal, which the likes of Paul Scholes and Owen Hargreaves felt was a very harsh decision.

Copenhagen were level by the break, with goals from Mohamed Elyounoussi and then Diogo Goncalves, but Ten Hag feels neither strike should have counted.

The first, the Dutchman believes, should have been ruled out for offside, while the penalty converted by Goncalves, he feels was far too harsh on Harry Maguire, penalised for handball.

Bruno Fernandes gave United back the lead in the second half before two late goals secured the amazing win for the hosts, but Ten Hag felt there was injustice, not just in this match but across the season so far.

‘I think we played very good until the red card but the red card changed everything,’ Ten Hag told TNT Sports. ‘Then it becomes a different game.

F.C. Copenhagen v Manchester United: Group A - UEFA Champions League 2023/24
Marcus Rashford will miss Manchester United’s trip to Galatasaray (Picture: Getty Images)

‘Then you concede two goals that never should count. That’s very disappointing. Not only tonight. But in this moment we are in the season and we have to deal with that, with many decisions against us. That’s how it is, I’m sure it will turn. A season is long and at one point it will turn in our favour.’

On Rashford’s red card he said: ‘I think it was a very harsh decision. I’m sure he was going for the ball and I think the review was over and he went up to the screen, so I think the refereeing was not sure.

‘After the half time it went better, but the [first] two goals should never count. First it’s offside, there’s a player in front of Andre Onana. The second, what can you do about that?’

Speaking in a post-match press conference Ten Hag added: ‘In four games, four penalties against and I say three are very debateable.’

Rasmus Hojlund scored the Red Devils’ first two goals and the travelling side looked very good at that stage.

They continued to impress for most of the second half before the late meltdown, but Ten Hag was pleased with much of the performance.

‘I have seen a lot of positives from that game, but in the end we probably lose some focus,’ he said. ‘But it’s always hard when you have to play so long with 10 men. We fought, we ran, but we probably lose some focus.

FBL-EUR-C1-COPENHAGEN-MAN UTD
Rasmus Hojlund has now scored five Champions League goals in just four games (Picture: Getty Images)

‘Very disappointing of course, we fought so hard, played so good and still don’t have one point.’

Manchester United are now bottom of their Champions League group with two games to play, but hope is not lost as they are still just one point behind second-placed Galatasaray and they go to the Turkish side next.

MORE : FC Copenhagen edge 10-man Manchester United in seven-goal thriller

MORE : Marcus Rashford red card slammed by Paul Scholes and Owen Hargreaves

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