Manchester United captain Bruno Fernandes has given an insight into Erik ten Hag’s ruthless man-management and coaching style at Old Trafford.
Speaking to Rio Ferdinand for BT Sport, Fernandes revealed that Ten Hag’s strict handling of the players extended to the likes of Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo.
It’s an open secret that Ten Hag enjoyed a fractious relationship with Ronaldo before the 38-year-old left Old Trafford.
Relegated to being a substitute, things eventually boiled over when Ronaldo granted an explosive interview to Piers Morgan in which he blasted the United boss for disrespecting him.
Faced with no attractive offers from European clubs, Ronaldo signed for Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia.
Ferdinand quizzed the United playmaker about Ten Hag and how he goes about leading the group.
Fernandes told Ferdinand, “He demands. He demands from people – you either do it or you’re out, you won’t play. In the beginning, we thought, ‘will he really do that? If a big player doesn’t do what he wants, will he pull him apart or not?”
“And he did that, he did that many times. He did it with Cristiano, he did that with Jadon, and Marcus also. Marcus was probably in the best form at Wolves, but he did something wrong and the manager just pulled him out – and we thought, wow.”
“It’s the way it has to be sometimes. You know, you are a parent. I am a father too. Sometimes you have to make some rules at your house. If not, they will go all over you and in a short period of time they will be the owners of the house.”
— ☈ッ (@TheFergusonWay) February 23, 2023
The results of Ten Hag’s firm hand are visible for all to see.
The team is playing a better and more pleasing brand of football.
Several players have improved under the Dutchman’s stewardship and levels at the club have been raised as a result.