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Erik ten Hag wanted five signings this transfer window

With time running out, United are looking at alternatives much to Ten Hag's displeasure

by Ayantan Chowdhury

After finishing a disastrous sixth in the Premier League last season while creating all sorts of unwanted records, Manchester United were expected to recruit smartly this transfer window.

But fans around the world did not hold out too much hope as they are aware of the Glazers and their stingy attitude when it comes to buying players. They have never spent their own money and instead have drained United’s money for their own benefits.

Despite Richard Arnold’s bold words to a group of fans, nothing has changed behind-the-scenes with John Murtough unable to do justice to his role as Director of Football.

And the transfer window so far has been a disaster with only three players coming in through the door. And none of the three players really elevate the squad to the next level especially considering the calibre of players United have let go.

Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard all departed, freeing up a considerable portion of the wage bill and the deficiencies were obvious for anyone associated with United.


The entire defence including a goalkeeper had to be recruited along with two world-class midfielders with one being a defensive midfielder. Up front, a striker and a right winger needed to be brought in.

ETH furious

According to a Daily Mirror report, the Dutch boss is furious with how the United hierarchy have let him down. He was promised a minimum of five players including his primary targets but those promises remain to be fulfilled.

“His agents have been left disappointed that the 52-year-old coach has been hung out to dry after being landed with a shambolic window and the Cristiano Ronaldo circus,” the report mentions.

The Fred and Scott McTominay midfield partnership has underwhelmed for far too long and Frenkie de Jong was identified as the perfect fix. Three months on, still no progress with Chelsea still seemingly ahead in the race.

So far, Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez have walked through the doors at Carrington. Malacia is a young and exciting prospect but he is not an instant improvement over an-ever declining Luke Shaw.

Eriksen is a classy operator and has been one of the few decent players so far. But the Dane, who arrived on a free, is not the same force he used to be back when he was a Tottenham Hotspur player.

Pundits and fans alike were worried whether Martinez could cope with the physicality of the Premier League. And so far, it seems like it will take time or he might be better suited to play as a defensive midfielder.

No improvement yet

Harry Maguire and Shaw are still starting games while the Ronaldo circus still has not died down. David de Gea is still letting in soft goals while being a liability with the ball at his feet. Not to mention that Fred and McTominay remain Ten Hag’s only available senior midfield partnership.

Antony was supposed to be Ten hag’s preferred choice as attacker but Ajax’s valuation has meant United are not interested in a deal.

Links with Bundesliga striker Sasa Kalajdzic have not impressed the Dutch boss who had given his list of targets to United as soon as he joined. The Austrian is said to figure quite below in that list.

United fans empathise with Ten Hag and the cruel hand he has been dealt with. There is very little hope of the Red Devils salvaging the window with an underwhelming signing of Adrien Rabiot set to take place soon.

But let’s look at the bright side, at least, they did not sign Marko Arnautovic.

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