Erik ten Hag lists where Alejandro Garnacho can still improve at Manchester United

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag outlines the importance of producing consistent goals and assists for Alejandro Garnacho

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag believes Alejandro Garnacho needs to keep producing goals and assists despite strong performances recently. The 19-year-old has been the best attacker for United this season as the rest of the attackers continue to struggle.

Garnacho played as an impact substitute last season as Ten Hag exploited his pace and trickery against the tired opposition. The Argentinian showed glimpses of his immense talent as fans’ expectations for the player continued to rise.

Garnacho’s performances last season earned him an international call-up from Argentina in March of 2023. Ten Hag has struggled with depth in his attacking department this season after a fallout with Jadon Sancho.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 06: Reece James of Chelsea and Alejandro Garnacho of Manchester United battle for possession during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Chelsea FC at Old Trafford on December 06, 2023 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Furthermore, Antony missed many games due to a leave of absence after the September international break. The situation allowed more game-time for Garnacho and he capitalised on the opportunities by cementing a starting role this season.

The Argentina international scored an incredible overhead kick against Everton after club football restarted post-November international break. Garnacho added another in the 3-3 draw against Galatasaray in the Champions League Group A fixture.

The 19-year-old continued his productive form since then as he provided a crucial assist against Chelsea in United’s 2-1 victory. Garnacho has continued to produce good performances overall, helping his team in both the defensive and offensive phases.

Ten Hag told reporters (h/t Manchester Evening News) that despite the pleasing performances, Garnacho needs consistently high productivity. He said:

“There is big potential and there is a lot to build on but we are happy with his [Garnacho] performance at this moment and happy with his contribution. The foundation and basis is always the defending part of his game but attacking-wise he has the key actions – assists, counter-attacks and scoring goals. That is very important for an offensive player that you have the production.”

United need their young Argentinian to continue producing goals and assist if they want to continue pursuing the top four. The Red Devils are currently just three points behind the fourth-placed Manchester City, sixth in the Premier League table.

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Ten Hag dropped out of form star forward Marcus Rashford in favour of Garnacho at the left-wing position recently. The move should fill the 19-year-old with confidence that the manager has complete faith in his young attacker.