“It’s going to be tough”: Manchester United legend gives verdict on the Erik ten Hag era

Patrice Evra pragmatic about the reign of Erik ten Hag at Manchester United

Patrice Evra is upbeat about Erik ten Hag taking the managerial role at Manchester United. The former Red Devil has high aspirations for the Dutch manager’s reign in the Old Trafford dugout.

Ten Hag was appointed United manager at the end of the last campaign. The Dutch manager came in with the reputation of playing a modern style of football. Fans have seen glimpses of change in the Manchester-based club’s style of play during the pre-season.

Speaking to Stadium Astro (h/t Metro), Evra has renewed hope for United. The former Red Devil has noticed changes in the players’ performances and attitudes. He’s taking the results in the pre-season with a pinch of salt, though.

Manchester United have had a promising preseason under Erik ten Hag.
Manchester United have had a promising pre-season under Erik ten Hag. (Pic Credit- Getty Images)

“I think United with Ten Hag we’ve got hope. Finally, I see the players know exactly what they’re going to do. They have a plan.

“Don’t get me wrong, this is pre-season. I like to stay positive but it doesn’t matter if you have a good pre-season because when the league starts it’s a different kind of pressure.

“It’s been a long time since I’ve heard an interview of any player saying we know what we are doing. That’s why I’m really positive about it.”

United have shown renewed energy and confidence during the friendlies. The first game against Liverpool was good for the fans to see. We beat Liverpool 4-0. The game provided positive glimpses for spectators.

Other games have also been impressive in the sense that the new gaffer in the dugout seems to have brought out the best in some of our players. Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho struggled for form last season. But they’ve looked entirely different under the Dutch manager.

Ten Hag brings a more attractive style

Evra, who spent eight fruitful seasons in Manchester, is cautiously optimistic. Other sides in the Premier League have further strengthened their squads this summer. Challenging them will be a hard task.

Manchester United have shown renewed energy in the friendlies.
Manchester United have shown renewed energy in the friendlies. (Photo by Tom Purslow/Manchester United via Getty Images)

“But when I see the other teams and the players they bring in I’m like it’s going to be tough to get into the top four. But we’re going in the right direction with Ten Hag.”

Ten Hag has brought in new ideas that have already resulted in success in his previous stints. The system is tried and tested. Ajax had one of their most prolific spells in recent years under the Dutch manager.

The same has been reflected in United’s play in Ten Hag’s initial days in the Old Trafford dugout. Hopefully, this form continues as our first game of the new campaign inches closer.

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Evra was part of a Man United side that had a habit of winning the big trophies. We are now barely a faint shadow of the team that played under Sir Alex Ferguson. But Ten Hag offers hope like no other manager did before him.

It will take time to get back to the top, especially with fierce competition like Manchester City and Liverpool, but there is a feeling that Ten Hag is the man to trust for the short and long term.