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Erik ten Hag confident Manchester United can end rivals’ dominance | Manchester United

Erik ten Hag confident Manchester United can end rivals’ dominance | Manchester United

Erik ten Hag believes Manchester United can end the domestic dominance of Manchester City and Liverpool under his watch.

The Dutchman has started his first official week in charge of United. Despite Sunday 1-0 defeat at Crystal Palace Relegating them to a new Premier League low of 58 points and sixth place, Ten Hag is confident he can revive United.

The 52-year-old has been told there is a view that City and Liverpool will remain in the ascendancy until one or both of their managers, Pep Guardiola and Jürgen Klopp, leave their respective club .

Ten Hag said: “I admire them both, Manchester City and Liverpool. They both play really fantastic football. But you will always see that an era can end and I look forward to fighting with them. He was pressed if hegemony can be ended before the managers leave. “I think so.”

Despite the poor finish, Ten Hag suggested that the group he supports remains one that can challenge. “The previous season, this team finished second in the league, so it has potential. I think if we improve, if we can work with them, we can get more out of it than this season,” he said. “First of all, we want to make the fans proud. Secondly, of course, right now the current situation is obviously not so good. It’s a big challenge. I want to build and build a team that fights for each other, that is united and that will get results.

“We also play at the Théâtre des Rêves [Old Trafford]. We want to entertain. In the end, the intention is to play fantastic football. If we can’t play fantastic football, we still have to win.

David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, José Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjær are Ten Hag’s predecessors in the nine years since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson, who guided United to their last Premier League title.

Ten Hag was asked why he could succeed if this quartet failed to win the championship. “The confidence is that I have a good feeling about the people around,” he said. “I have a good feeling from the meetings, we have a plan, and now it’s about implementing the plan, integrating it into a process, cooperating, being consistent in our plan and when we have right people around, with the right connection and the right commitment and we will get the success we want.

Ten Hag shrugged off the idea that he was putting his reputation at risk by taking the challenge. “I don’t see it as a risk. This club has a great history and now let’s build a future,” he said. “It will be exciting.”

Ten Hag conceded he will have to get to work. “What we think is, ‘This is a project and it takes time.’ But I also know in this club and in other clubs like Ajax and Bayern Munich [where he was second team manager] that at the top there is never time.

Ten Hag was cautious about his strategy for the team. “The plan is huge and we only have a short time. First we’re going to roll it out to staff, then to players, and then you’ll see,” he said. “The first steps – what we do first is build the staff, build the team and build a good pre-season plan, that’s what we’re working on right now. I’m working with my team to be successful and that’s what I’m looking forward to. We have a strategy, a concept, and we’re going to work on it.

“We [he and his staff] in each club, think about: ‘What is in the spirit of the club?’ That’s what we want to know, but that’s also why they made me manager. I have to bring something to the club, a dynamic. If you want to reach the top, you have to demand, and that’s what we’re going to do.

Van Gaal warned his compatriot that he should choose a “football club and not a commercial club”. It was a reference to the perception that United’s main objective is financial and not sporting. When asked about it, Ten Hag said, “I heard that, but I’ll draw my own line. I am convinced that will not be the case. I spoke with the directors – football is one, two, three at this club.

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Ten Hag, who started Monday’s press conference by shaking hands with correspondents, was clear about the role of 37-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo. “Goals. I speak with Ronaldo first before speaking with you,” the manager said.

He will also wait for the return of the first of his players on June 27 to meet them for the first time. “They need a break to think. I will speak with the players at the end of June and the first week of July,” he said.

United have confirmed Steve McClaren and Mitchell van der Gaag in the Ten Hag coaching staff.

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