Former Manchester United centre-back Rio Ferdinand hailed Erik ten Hag for transforming the atmosphere around Carrington. Notably impressed, Ferdinand spoke highly of the positive changes he saw at the club’s training ground.
A familiar face returns returns
The former United defender was pictured at Carrington (via The Daily Mail) as he had come to interview Bruno Fernandes as a BT Sport pundit ahead of United’s second-leg Europa League clash against Barcelona.
The thrilling first leg ended 2-2 at the Nou Camp, leaving everything to play for at Old Trafford on Thursday.
The iconic defender-turned-pundit treated himself to a walk around Carrington. The 44-year-old insisted that the club’s positive transformation was palpable. The optimistic energy surrounding the ground is a welcome change.
United was once a force to be reckoned with but has since been starved of a title for nearly a decade.
Change has come
Ferdinand gushed on his YouTube show FIVE, “The vibes at Carrington and Old Trafford have changed dramatically.”
“It’s become more positive, the ambience in the place. The cafeteria has even changed.”
“It’s like everything has changed. Looks different, feels different, food’s different.”
“The feeling when you walk in, I’ve had very negative vibes [in the past] when I’ve walked through the corridors of the training ground.”
“I was on my own, walking back out through the training ground, through the corridors, and I stood there and just smiled. I can sense something happening in here now. I don’t what it is or where it’s going to, but the ambience is very different. There’s a confidence in the place.”
“And the confidence isn’t about the players alone, it’s the staff. I can sense something with the staff. They’re more upbeat, happy to be in at work every day.
And that’s all been generated and created by Erik ten Hag and his management team and some people behind the scenes because there’s not one person who can change the whole culture of a football club – it’s a collective approach.”
Old Trafford continues to dream
The United revival has been almost unstoppable under new boss Ten Hag. The club sits in third place in the Premier League and still has a slither of hope of lifting the title.
The Red Devils are just five points shy of Premier League leaders Arsenal.
What’s more, United have the opportunity to win the League Cup final this Sunday. Only Newcastle United stand in their way. The club last lifted the trophy in 2017.
“It’s the right path right now, and given they’re in the running for four trophies still, not that I think they’ll win four,” Ferdinand added. “It’s nice to go to Carrington and Old Trafford and feel more optimistic than negative.”