Erik ten Hag says Manchester United are not yet the finished article

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By Martin Graham | 5th Sep 2022

Manchester United boss Erik Ten Hag believes his Manchester United side are far from an elite side. The Red Devils beat Arsenal 3-1 on Sunday to go fifth on the Premier League log.

It is good to see Manchester United back winning. The Red Devils are on a roll, and people at the club are excited at the results they have churned out so far. They have won four games on the bounce, and the confidence is returning.

On Sunday afternoon, the Red Devils thrashed Arsenal 3-1 at Old Trafford as they continue their dominance over the Gunners on their home ground. It was not a vintage display by Manchester United, but they put up a defensive performance that suggests they’re on their way back to the top.

Following their victory over Arsenal, United have sneaked into the top six after a disastrous start to the season. Manchester United fans have started extolling the virtues of the team and believe they can challenge any team in the league, but Ten Hag has been quick to douse their expectations. The Dutchman said United is still far off being a top Premier League club.

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Manchester United are not yet a top Premier League club

Since the victory over Liverpool, Manchester United have gone on to win three more matches and now sits fifth on the Premier League log. There are suggestions that the team is back among the elite after victories over two top teams in the league.

The Red Devils have now won four matches and lost two, with no draws. The 3-1 win over Arsenal has boosted the confidence in the squad. It ensured that they now have a say in matters that concern the top four. Despite the arguments for Manchester United following their recent victories, Erik Ten Hag says the club is not there yet.

According to Ten Hag, Manchester United are still a work in progress, and what the fans see is just the beginning of the process and is still a long way off. At a news conference, Ten Hag said the team has started doing things much better. He said the current situation is an investment and the team has to get better if they want to win trophies.

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United: a big club with a small club mentality

Manchester United beat Arsenal 3-1, but the scoreline bellies the statistics. Antony, who joined the Red Devils from Ajax for €100 million, looked anything but a player of that value. The Brazilian may have scored the opener, but it was an average performance with the gloss of a goal.

Antony gave United a 1-0 lead in the 35th minute before Bukayo Saka levelled matters in the 60th minute. Manchester United struck back in the 66th minute through Marcus Rashford and the Englishman completed his brace a few moments later from a blistering counterattack.

Manchester United played as most small teams would. They sat back, soaked up the pressure from Arsenal and hit them on the counter. The Gunners let their naivety come to the fore again as comical decisions gift-wrapped all three points for Manchester United.

Manchester United cursed Jose Mourinho for this style of play, but the club is now cheering at what they once despised. Rashford, buoyed by his brace, said the team should be proud of their achievement against Arsenal.

Manchester United will start their Europa League campaign on Thursday against Spanish side Real Sociedad. They will now face Crystal Palace in a Premier League tie on Sunday. The Red Devils will also look forward to the Manchester derby on October 2, where they come up against the might of Erling Haaland.

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer

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