Man United’s Ten Hag on Ratcliffe talks: Don’t need assurances

Erik ten Hag has revealed he has already held talks with Manchester United co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe and will go on holiday the day after the FA Cup final.

Ten Hag said assurances from Ratcliffe about his position were “not necessary” and insisted he was planning to “go for next season.”

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Sources have told ESPN that United chiefs are assessing a number of possible replacements for Ten Hag including Thomas Tuchel, Mauricio Pochettino, Kieran McKenna and Thomas Frank.

Sources close to United have told ESPN that club chiefs will “review the season after the cup final” with “no decisions before then.”

But asked at a news conference on Thursday whether he would be part of the end-of-season review following the cup final, Ten Hag said he has already spoken to Ratcliffe and the INEOS hierarchy.

“We already did and on Sunday I will go on holiday; I think I deserve it,” said Ten Hag.

Asked whether he was given assurances during the talks that his position is safe ahead of next season, the Dutchman replied: “It is not necessary, we will go for next season.”

Ten Hag has a contract at Old Trafford until 2025, but his position has become increasingly vulnerable following a season which saw United finish eighth in the Premier League and miss out on a place in the Champions League.

The Dutchman has blamed a lengthy injury list for the team’s problems, but says lifting the FA Cup on Saturday would put a different spin on the campaign.

“We will be in a very different place if we win on Saturday because we will be in Europe and we will have another trophy,” he said.

“But still, three finals in two seasons is very good, I would say, because this club when I entered it was not in a good state, absolutely not.

“I think we improved a lot and even when you consider all the injuries we’ve had, it’s a horrible season for us. Absolutely that has to change.”

Despite United’s struggles this season, winning the FA Cup would secure a second trophy in two years. Ten Hag has also brought through youngsters Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo and the 54-year-old thinks many of the positives of his reign are being overlooked.

“I am sure that many forget, yes, absolutely,” said Ten Hag.

“This club is in a transition period and we have progressed many players to high levels. Some young players also came into the team and became internationals and will go to the Copa America and the Euros, which is very good.

“We want to improve the squad, we want to create a team for the future, but in the meantime we want to win trophies. On Saturday, we have a big opportunity to win another trophy and a third final in two years, I would say, is not too bad.”