Ten Hag lauds culture change at Man Utd after late Fulham win

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Erik ten Hag hailed the culture and mentality change at Manchester United after the Red Devils battled to a late Premier League victory at Fulham on Sunday.

Dan James' second-half strike at Craven Cottage seemed set to haunt his former side after Christian Eriksen's opener, but substitute Alejandro Garnacho pounced in the 93rd minute to snatch a 2-1 victory.

United had their backs against the wall for large parts after Eriksen's well-crafted 14th-minute goal, with David de Gea making a string of fine stops from his six saves.

Ten Hag pinpointed the resolute United performance as a characterisation of the transformation within the Red Devils' ranks, highlighting the "togetherness" between the players and the supporters as United look to rebuild.

The Dutchman told Sky Sports: "We have a base, we are going in the right direction. The culture has changed. The mentality has changed. That is good.

"We have improved our football base but the first platform is having a better mentality.

"Together with the fans. We are united. We have togetherness. The dressing room, staff, directors, the whole club and the fans have a togetherness and we have that development."

Garnacho, aged 18 years and 135 days, became the youngest player to score a 90th-minute winner in the Premier League since Federico Macheda against Aston Villa, also for United in April 2009 (17y 226d).

The teenager scored his first United senior goal against Real Sociedad in the Europa League two weeks ago, before recording two assists in the 4-2 EFL Cup win over Villa on Thursday.

While questions remain over the Argentina international's attitude, Ten Hag hailed the impact Garnacho had from the bench once more.

"I would say the last few weeks we had some good choices with subs coming in and having big impacts. Today as well," the Dutchman added. "It was a massive win, really important and I'm really happy with this one.

"You have to balance [Garnacho]. You have to perform under stress and he came in and had a big impact on Thursday. The same again."

Ten Hag, speaking to BBC Sport, referenced the mentality of Garnacho as the winger looks to earn a spot in his starting XI.

"That is fantastic. First he shows the mentality you need. Under stress he's performing, he's coming in, he has an impact, he has the belief," he continued.

"Twice in three, four days, so that is really good. I'm really happy that we can bring a young player up and it shows that when players deserve it they get their chances. That is the first one but we have to bring more.

"He's great. I like that he has a big belief and that's great to work with. He likes football. He's a real pleasure."

United head into the World Cup break three points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, who have played a game more, with the Red Devils' next league outing coming at home to Nottingham Forest on December 27.