Manchester United assistant manager makes decision on taking vacant Ajax job

Ajax sacked Maurice Steijn with the club in the relegation zone.

Manchester United assistant manager makes decision on taking vacant Ajax job
Nottingham Forest v Manchester United - Premier League
Mitchell van der Gaag has been Erik ten Hag’s assistant at Ajax and Man Utd (Photo: Getty)

Manchester United assistant manager Mitchell van der Gaag is a top candidate to become the new Ajax head coach.

But the Dutch giants are unlikely to pursue Erik ten Hag’s No.2, as it is reported that he has assured United that he has no interest in taking the job.

On Monday, it was announced that Ajax had sacked Maurice Steijn after an awful run of form had seen the club shockingly slip into the Eredivisie relegation zone.

The Amsterdam team are without a win in their last eight matches, which is the worst run in the club’s history, despite Steijn spending over £100million since his appointment just over five months ago.

Former United manager Louis van Gaal recently returned to Ajax in an advisory role and has identified Van der Gaag as the ideal man to take charge of the ailing side, with enquiries made into whether he had a release clause in his contract.

The 52-year-old was previously in charge of Ajax’s youth team from 2019 to 2021, before becoming Ten Hag’s assistant for his last season in charge of the club’s first-team.

He subsequently followed his fellow Dutchman to Old Trafford where he has become a key part of the Red Devils’ set up.

AFC Ajax v AZ Alkmaar - Dutch Eredivisie
Maurice Steijn was sacked with Ajax in the relegation zone (Photo: Getty)

And that is not set to change according to The Mirror, who say that Van der Gaag making clear to all concerned that he is happy in Manchester.

The news is a big blow for Ajax who were said to be disappointed when he left the club to follow Ten Hag, and their hunt for their fifth manager in 17 months.

They have asked Steijn’s assistant Hedwiges Maduro to take temporary charge and are reportedly in talks with John van t’ Schip to become the head coach for the rest of the season.

Ajax are set to travel to Brighton on Thursday night in the Europa League with both clubs yet to win in the competition.

Meanwhile, Van der Gaag will be at Ten Hag’s side on Tuesday night when United host Copenhagen in a must-win Champions League clash.

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