Erik ten Hag, the manager of Manchester United, is resolute in his stance that he harbors no remorse regarding the decision not to secure Harry Kane’s signing during the summer transfer window.
Kane had occupied the top spot on Ten Hag’s wish list and was strongly associated with a move to Old Trafford. However, he ultimately joined Bayern Munich for £100 million from Tottenham, while United opted to bring in Rasmus Hojlund instead.
As the England captain prepares to make his Champions League debut for Bayern against United at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday night, Ten Hag was posed with the question of whether he regrets missing out on Kane.
‘No,’ said United’s chairman. ‘I believe we discussed it. I don’t believe we need to go over this again. Rasmus is satisfactory to us. He got hurt in the first game. He played against Arsenal, made his debut (against Brighton), and now we must incorporate him into the squad. You can see he has a lot of skill.’
Ten Hag stated that he has spoken to Marcus Rashford about forming a stronger relationship with the new £72 million signing. Rashford was chastised for failing to pass to Hojlund on multiple times during United’s 3-1 defeat to Brighton at Old Trafford on Saturday.
Yes, absolutely,’ he added. ‘How can the two benefit from each other? But they have to know each other and that process just started.
‘But, at the same time, we need results. It has to go hand in hand. We learn from every training and every game and we reflect. Of course, we need that as a coaching staff but we have seen Rasmus and Rashy together, they are talking how they can benefit from each other.
‘You can see that there is talk and engagement on the pitch, the connection is there, and they will get the routines there.’
United travelled in Bavaria without 12 first-team players on Tuesday. Donny van de Beek is not in the Champions League squad, and Antony and Jadon Sancho are also injured.
Ten Hag ended up signing Rasmus Hojlund for £72m – and insisted he was ‘happy’ with his ‘big talent’
Despite training at Carrington, Harry Maguire was added to the list of injured players on Tuesday and did not make the trip. Erik Ten Hag remarked, “He had some complaints, and we have to assess the extent of his injury. He completed the training but wasn’t fit enough to travel.”
Manchester United has experienced a challenging start to the Premier League season, losing three of their first five games. Ten Hag acknowledged that his team needs to significantly improve, especially as they face one of Europe’s top teams.
Bayern Munich has an impressive track record in the Champions League, having won their opening group game for the past 19 years with a combined score of 47-2. The last team to avoid defeat at the Allianz Arena in a group game was Ten Hag’s Ajax in 2018.
“We don’t believe we need a complete reset, absolutely not,” Ten Hag emphasized. “We are in a continuous process, and what you can observe is that in certain parts of the games, we perform exceptionally well. However, in other parts, we fall below our usual standards. What we must demand is consistency; we need to elevate our performance levels for the entire duration of the matches.”