‘He’s a brave manager’ – Paul Scholes praises Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag for dumping Harry Maguire and changing tactics

PAUL SCHOLES says Erik Ten Hag got it right playing the ball from behind and scrapping club captain Harry Maguire.

Manchester United had a nightmare start to the season with a 2-1 home loss to Brighton and a 4-1 humiliation at Brentford.

Erik ten Hag has received glowing praise from Paul Scholes

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Erik ten Hag has received glowing praise from Paul ScholesPhoto credit: Reuters
Club captain Harry Maguire has been dropped on the bench in recent weeks

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Club captain Harry Maguire has been dropped on the bench in recent weeksCredit: Alamy

Playing themselves into trouble, the Red Devils lost possession trying to start moves with short passes from goalkeeper David De Gea.

While teams like Manchester City and others in Europe have the players for it, United simply don’t have them.

United legend Scholes said: “The crowd gets nervous when the goalkeeper tries to play a ten-yard pass, that’s not a Manchester United philosophy, that’s Barcelona or Ajax.

“He stumbled upon it with Erik ten Hag. After the Brentford game he realized he didn’t have the players to play like that, he knew he had to be more direct.

“Raphael Varane, a great player as he was, is not a great footballer.

David De Gea is not a great footballer. So play to your strengths who for United are the attacking players and you have to admire the new manager for playing like that.

Scholes says he’s been impressed with Ten Hag so far, not least because he’s now going for results with a more direct style rather than sticking to his possession game like fellow Dutchman Louis Van Gaal did at United.

He said: “Louis Van Gaal came to Manchester United wanting to play possession-based football, but United are not. It was always about substance instead of style, goals and chances instead of a nice end product.

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“I’ve been encouraged by Erik ten Hag from what I’ve seen so far. He’s changed a lot since the Brentford game. The simple thing was, don’t play from behind.

“Bring the ball to your best players. Get Christian Eriksen in central midfield, a player who can pass balls to the strikers.”

The new boss had to make a big call to the club captain after those first two games and he did so by eliminating Maguire.

Scholes said: “He had to skip Harry Maguire. It was a brave decision. He is a courageous manager.”

Since those big demands on playing style and staff, United have been on a four-game winning streak in the Premier League.

They go into Sunday’s Manchester derby at The Etihad just five points adrift of Champions City but with a game in hand.

Paul Scholes spoke to Gary Neville about ‘The Overlap’ in partnership with Sky Bet.

Paul Scholes has praised the'brave' Man United manager

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Paul Scholes has praised the ‘brave’ Man United managerPhoto credit: Getty

https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6335764/man-utd-paul-scholes-erik-ten-hag-harry-maguire/ ‘He’s a brave manager’ – Paul Scholes praises Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag for dumping Harry Maguire and changing tactics

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