Man Utd: Rio Ferdinand claims four stars will be seriously angry by Ten Hag constantly selecting struggling player
Rio Ferdinand has questioned Erik ten Hag’s decision to regularly select Wout Weghorst for Manchester United and has named the four stars who will be becoming increasingly angered by the decision to pick him as a No 10.
The Dutchman arrived on loan from Burnley, via Besiktas, in the January transfer window. Seen as a stop-gap to help United fill the void left by Cristiano Ronaldo, the 6ft 6in frontman has struggled during his time at Old Trafford.
And while he has picked up a trophy by helping the club lift the Carabao Cup, he only has two goals from 27 appearances so far.
Having played both as a No 9 and a No 10, Ten Hag has struggled to get a tune from the 30-year-old forward.
And while he has expressed a desire to make his stay permanent, it seems highly unlikely United will take him up on that opportunity.
Instead, Ten Hag will likely pursue a new big-name centre forward to lead the line. And he has a number of possible names under consideration, though a club-record move for Victor Osimhen has now been seemingly been ruled out.
For now, though, Ten Hag continues to persist with Weghorst.
He once again started for the club in Sunday evening’s game at West Ham. But despite United controlling the first half, they found themselves going in 1-0 down at the break. And that is how it stayed with United unable to break through against the Hammers.
It leaves United just a point clear of Liverpool in fourth, though United have a game in hand.
READ MORE: Ten Hag names what Man Utd ‘need’ to avert top-four disaster; puts blame elsewhere after De Gea blunder
Rio Ferdinand baffled by Weghorst selection
Next up is a clash against Wolves at Old Trafford this Saturday.
Reflecting on the defeat at the London Stadium, Ferdinand cannot understand what Ten Hag sees in Weghorst.
He claims the decision to regularly pick him as a No 10 will be angering Bruno Fernandes, given it’s his favoured role. In addition, his selection also means Alejandro Garnacho, Anthony Martial and Jadon Sancho are benched as a result.
Speaking after Sunday’s game on BT Sport, Ferdinand said: “I just think Man Utd’s No 10, a top team’s No 10 doesn’t look like a Weghorst in my eyes. The attributes that he’s got.
“Let’s look at it another way, if I’m Sancho, Bruno, Garnacho, Martial and I’m sitting there watching him line-up as a No 10 in front of me, the No 10 shirt means something else. It’s a player that can create, has got guile, can get between the lines and get on the half turn and bring other people into play in that sense and get goals.
“He doesn’t offer all those things I’ve just said there… I think his best piece of play today was a tackle in his own box. That’s a no.10, that’s not what no.10s are known for doing.”
Gary Neville claims failure to make the Champions League will fall on the Glazers.
Neville tweeted: “The real disgrace are the Glazers… Members of staff on and off the pitch are in an uncertain position waiting for new owners! Let alone recruitment and what their budget is going to be! This should have been done! Classless to the end!”
Ten Hag left with little choice
His Sky Sports colleague Jamie Carragher, however, insists the loss at West Ham must fall upon Ten Hag.
Replying sarcastically, he said: “Yeah, the Glazers decided to play Weghorst as a No 10, spent £90m on Antony and £70m on Casemiro (31) on a five-year deal!”
Fellow pundit Peter Crouch backed up Ferdinand’s claims. And the former Liverpool striker admits he’s also baffled by Ten Hag’s tactics.
“Weghorst is a good player but I just can’t get my head round what he gives in that position,” he said.
“I think if you play Weghorst you’ve got to play him high up. Then Rashford and Sancho can bounce balls off him. You can play one touch and then he’s in the box for any kind of crosses. If you play that way you’re not going to get the best out of him.”
With no goals in 14 Premier League appearances, both pundits have a point.
Ten Hag will point to a lack of options in attack this season. And it’s easy to see why signing a new striker will be top priority this summer.
The addition of a regular source of goals will make United much stronger next season.
But for now, Ten Hag will likely persist with Weghorst in what will be their remaining four games. It will come as a major surprise too if he is offered a deal to stay.
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