During the summer of 2023, Erik ten Hag looks forward to carrying out a major reform, after a promising first campaign at Old Trafford. Man United has recruited many players who are expected to become key members of the team, such as Rasmus Hojlund, Mason Mount and Andre Onana, but also let many stars leave.
Eric Bailly, Fred, David de Gea, Alex Telles,… are all out of Ten Hag’s plans. Furthermore, the Dutch strategist also wanted to push away both Harry Maguire and Scott McTominay but failed. Now, the former Ajax coach probably feels lucky that the transfer of these two players was not completed.
West Ham United is a potential destination for both Maguire and McTominay, especially when David Moyes’ team made a lot of money when selling Declan Rice to Arsenal. West Ham made an offer worth £20 million for the former Red Devils captain, but it was rejected. Then they came in with a higher bid for a £30m defender. This offer was accepted by Man United, but Maguire did not want to leave.
The same price applies to McTominay. David Moyes tried to lure the Scot to the North London Stadium – but Man United priced him higher, at £45m. Accordingly, The Hammers were forced to look elsewhere. There is also information that West Ham set a price of 60 million pounds for both deals, but failed. And this could save Man United’s season.
Ten Hag made some bold decisions in the summer, expelling a lot of players. This partly causes the Old Trafford team to lack depth this season. Amid the injury crisis in defense, Maguire stepped up, and had sublime performances. When Lisandro Martinez was injured, Man United lacked a good ball carrier from the back line and Maguire did this very well. Without him, Ten Hag will have to use a patchwork defense and it will be difficult for them to have positive results in the Premier League or Champions League.
Similarly, McTominay also knows how to take advantage of his opportunities. More importantly, the Scotland international scored important goals. His brace against Brentford and strike against Sheffield United helped the Red Devils to two consecutive wins. It can even help Man United change the outcome of the season.
Without Maguire and McTominay, things could have been different for Ten Hag’s team. Man United will probably get money from them to reinvest, but there is no guarantee this will be done effectively. Failed deals have now become a blessing for Ten Hag, for the Red Devils.
Minh Tuan | 11:33 October 28, 2023