Ten Hag hits back at ’embarrassing’ media

Daily News
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Ten Hag hits back at ’embarrassing’ media

Erik ten Hag has hit back at the media for its “embarrassing” reaction to Manchester United’s narrow FA Cup semi-final victory over Coventry, describing certain comments as a “disgrace”.

United limped into the FA Cup final by winning on penalties having let a 3-0 lead slip and almost lost the tie in the last minute of extra-time when Coventry had a goal disallowed by an ultra-tight VAR call.

Ten Hag defended his side’s display immediately after the game, insisting he was “not embarrassed” about the manner of the victory, and the Dutchman strongly reiterated his views on Tuesday.

“No, I absolutely can’t understand the reaction [from the media],” Ten Hag said. “You asked the question: ‘Was it embarrassing?’ No, the reaction from you was embarrassing.”

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Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville dissect Manchester United’s narrow FA Cup semi-final win over Coventry and what the performance at Wembley could mean for Ten Hag and his future

Former United captain Roy Keane was among those to criticise the performance of Ten Hag’s team, suggesting they lacked any “leadership and character” to close the tie out from such a comfortable position.

Sky Sports pundits Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher have also been vocal in their views of United throughout this season, with Carragher suggesting there is no way back for Ten Hag following Sunday’s result.

While he didn’t mention individuals by name, Ten Hag added: “In top football, it’s about results. We made it through to the final and we deserved it. Not just in this game, but also in the other games. We were in control until the last 20 minutes, and we also had bad luck.

“We were very lucky in the end with the penalties, but we made it to the final and that is a huge achievement. Twice in two years is magnificent. For me as a manager, four cup finals in four years.

“So, the comments are a disgrace.”

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Bruno Fernandes says Manchester United have to be frustrated with their performance against Coventry but proud of making another FA Cup final

Ten Hag: Antony was wrong but provoked

Antony has come in for particular criticism after he cupped his ear with his hand in a mocking gesture towards the Coventry players when Rasmus Hojlund netted the winning penalty.

Ten Hag accepted Antony was wrong but claimed he was provoked, saying: “That’s why, this was a reaction of that, you haven’t seen the provocation, only the reaction. But he should not do it.

“I have seen Harry Maguire straight after and others, we should acknowledge the performance of Coventry to come into that… and the comeback. Also see we are 70 minutes totally dominating the game by far and creating many chances.

“At 3-0 it must have been the game is closed but the return from their side was very good.”

Antony, Man Utd

Image: Antony has been criticised for his reaction to Man Utd’s penalty shootout win against Coventry

The collapse added further intensity to the spotlight on Ten Hag’s position, and on Friday United announced that Jason Wilcox had left Southampton with immediate effect to become their new technical director.

Ten Hag said he was looking forward to working very closely with the former winger, adding: “We have to form a partnership, it’s very important. We are a little behind in the process so we have to catch up, so we will go and speed up the process.

“I met him yesterday [Monday] for the first time, we had some talks. This week we will not have so much time but from Monday on we will go forward.

“Of course, I know his profile, I know his methods in youth, a lot of experience there and then one year at Southampton. I know his background so I am looking forward to our partnership.”

Rashford, McTominay latest Man Utd injury concerns

Marcus Rashford celebrates after giving Manchester United a derby lead with a stunning strike

Image: Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay are fitness doubts ahead of Wednesday’s game against Sheffield United

Ten Hag also revealed he has more injury concerns ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League match against Sheffield United at Old Trafford.

Marcus Rashford and Scott McTominay are struggling to be fit following Sunday’s win at Wembley, while Alejandro Garnacho was substituted during that game because of a fitness concern but should be available to face the Blades – along with captain Bruno Fernandes.

“We had a problem with Garnacho so that’s why we took him off, but he will be fine,” Ten Hag said.

“McTominay we have to assess but is doubtful, Rashford is doubtful as well. There was also an issue with Bruno, but I think he can make it.”

Man Utd’s remaining fixtures

April 24: Sheffield United – Premier League (H), kick-off 8pm

April 27: Burnley – Premier League (H), kick-off 3pm

May 6: Crystal Palace – Premier League (A), kick-off 8pm, live on Sky Sports

May 12: Arsenal – Premier League (H), kick-off 4.30pm, live on Sky Sports

May 15: Newcastle – Premier League (H), kick-off 8pm, live on Sky Sports

May 19: Brighton – Premier League (A) – kick-off 4pm

May 25: Man City – FA Cup final (Wembley), kick-off 3pm

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