‘Pedantic’ pundit admits his Ten Hag prediction was ‘shameful’ after Man Utd surge

Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag smiles Credit: Alamy
Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag smiles Credit: Alamy

Dutch pundit Hugo Borst admits his prediction that Erik ten Hag would flop at Man Utd now looks “reckless” and “laughable”.

Ten Hag made a disastrous start to his time at Old Trafford with losses to Brighton and Brentford in his first two Premier League matches in charge.

But Man Utd have bounced back incredibly well from those early setbacks with Ten Hag’s men winning 12 of the 16 matches since.

They beat Man City at the weekend to move within a point of their arch-rivals but they remain nine points adrift of runaway leaders Arsenal.

It is now nine wins in a row in all competitions for the Red Devils with Ten Hag ensuring his side are still competing in the Europa League, Carabao Cup and FA Cup.

When it was announced Ten Hag would be joining Man Utd, Borst wrote in a column that it was “the dumbest move a top Dutch coach ever made”.

But now the Dutch pundit has admitted that he was wrong with Borst hailing Ten Hag’s “impressive” work at Old Trafford this season.

“Saturday’s defeat of great rival Manchester City marked the ninth win in a row,” Borst wrote in Algemeen Dagblad (via Sport Witness).

“No manager at this complicated club before him achieved 20 wins so quickly: Ten Hag thus beat both Louis van Gaal and Alex Ferguson.

“The way Ten Hag’s team kept Manchester City in check was impressive. That Erik ten Hag demands this of his players, we know of course. He worked wonders at Ajax.

“Only, that was in the Netherlands. That he achieves this in the league where the best football in the world is played is so clever.

“Manchester United’s transformation is impressive, but it is merely a prelude to what Ten Hag hopes to achieve. The championship will probably come too soon, but the club is on the right track.

“Confession: it was me who lectured Ten Hag back in August, more pedantic than cocky. Feel free to say it was reckless. Shameful. Laughable.”

Man Utd face Crystal Palace tomorrow before being given the chance to close the gap on leaders Arsenal when they face Mikel Arteta’s men at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

But Red Devils defender Luke Shaw insists it is “too early” to start making predictions that they can win the Premier League title this season.

Shaw said: “It’s too early to think about that. Right now as a team we have make sure we have the right consistency in performances and results.

“It’s always about winning. If you play well or not you need to be winning, and recently we’ve been doing that. We’ve not been playing our best but we’ve still been winning games.

“We’re still in four competitions. We’re Manchester United, we have to aim high, and of course we want to win all four but whether that happens or not is down to us, it’s down to the way we act, the way we rest and get ready for the next game.

“Now we have to forget about this game, forget about this win. We have a massive game on Wednesday against Crystal Palace.”

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