Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag admits he can’t explain why the team’s standards have diminished this season and feels some players are not giving their best at the moment.
So far, United have lost four of our last five matches and conceded 16 goals in six fixtures this term, having finished third in the Premier League table last term, winning the League Cup and reaching the FA Cup final.
Ahead of this weekend’s clash against Burnley, the Red Devils boss has questioned the players’ commitment and concentration levels in recent games.
“It’s always a concern when we didn’t run but I think against Bayern it was not the case,” Ten Hag explained, “but in certain situations, yes. So it’s also recognise the original situation and then is it about didn’t they recognise it? So they didn’t they scan it? Didn’t they make the right decisions or is it about willingness?
“Against Spurs, yeah, we didn’t run too much. We had a game last [season] where we did the same, where we didn’t run. But I think against Bayern we did our best from physical outputs but I think we didn’t always run in the right moment.”
“We have shown that we can do it because last year we had the most clean sheets in the Premier League because of the team because we defended very good as a team, so we have to get back to that standards.
“I am pushing the team and demanding from the team from the start of the season, but they are human beings, they are not robots. So why they are not doing it, I try to find out and I try to get and give the solutions and I also try to motivate the players to do the job.”
When asked if he knew why the players were not doing it, Ten Hag replied: “No (laughs). When you are in a period like we are in, always as a manager, you are asking yourself these questions. My job is to get them to do the job.
“As a manager, you have many tools and I make sure I use them. I will not say all because there are many ways to do it. You have to be creative, you have to be innovative, but you can be sure I use many.
“You do it in groups, you do it in teams, you do it individually, you do it over video, you do it in personal talks. You have many tools to coach, to make sure the team is in the right direction.”