Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag admits club kept him despite Thomas Tuchel talks | Football | Sport

Erik ten Hag has publicly admitted that he is aware talks took place between Manchester United and Thomas Tuchel. The 54-year-old, who this week learnt he would be in charge of the club for the 2024/25 campaign has appeared on Dutch television as a pundit ahead of England’s Euro 2024 opener with Serbia.

The announcement ended weeks of speculation over Ten Hag’s future, with the ex-Ajax man widely expected to be sacked following the FA Cup final despite his side beating Manchester City 2-1.

And INEOS chief Sir Jim Ratcliffe reportedly made contact with Tuchel to discuss him taking over, as well as Mauricio Pochettino after the Argentinian left Chelsea.

And speaking on NPO, he candidly admitted he was aware of club discussions with the German. “Manchester United have told me that they spoke with Tuchel,” he said. “But they eventually came to the conclusion that they already have the best manager.”
Despite landing a second trophy in two seasons at Old Trafford, Ten Hag oversaw an erratic league campagn. His side finished eighth, and suffered a record number of 14 Premier League defeats.

Towards the tail-end of the campaign, he frequently fended off questions from journalists over his future. But he insisted he did not feel undermined by Ratcliffe sounding out other potential managers.

“INEOS took their time,” said Ten Hag. “They are new in football, it’s normal to reflect the season. It’s no secret that they talked with multiple candidates.”

Tuchel, 50, is out of work after leaving Bayern Munich, with the club failing to land the Bundesliga title for the first time in 12 seasons. He was also linked with a return to Chelsea, before the Blues appointed Enzo Maresca.

However, the Dutchman did sound caution over the prospect of a new deal. His current contract expires next summer, with Ratcliffe now expected to offer him an extension having finally decided to keep him in place.

Manchester United and I still have to find an agreement for the new contract,” he conceded. “This isn’t easily done, we are still going to have to talk about this.”

United’s pre-season plans have already been finalised, with their first game coming as early as July 15 when they play Rosenborg in Norway. This will be followed by a trip to Rangers five days later, before embarking on a summer tour of the US.

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