- According to Ten Hag, Martinez has to accept that Premier League returns soon
- The Premier League returns on Boxing Day
- Manchester United are set to face Nottingham Forest
Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag has told defender Lisandro Martinez that he must be ready for the Premier League’s resumption. Martinez and his national teammates are currently touring Argentina after winning the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
Ten Hag Reminds Martinez
“I can understand that it’s very emotional. Winning the World Cup for your country is the highest you can be. But also Martinez has to accept that on the 27th, the Premier League comes back,” said Ten Hag.
The Dutchman also spoke about defender Rafael Varane, saying he should be proud of what he has achieved in his career.
“Varane, of course, is disappointed but can also be proud of being in the final, and all that he has achieved in his career is already massive, as a team and a player. To win so many trophies, he can still be proud. Getting to the final is a massive achievement. His nation was so close,” Ten Hag added.
He continued by saying that everyone knew that the Premier League would resume just five days after the World Cup and that they now had to come to terms with it.
“We all know the restart was five or six days after the World Cup final. Everyone has to be ready and accept it. The manager and coaching staff, of course, and the players must accept it. They want trophies,” said Ten Hag.
The former Ajax coach claimed he discussed with the team about the league and how they needed to be prepared for it.
“We discussed the challenging competition”, Ten Hag continued, “We must be prepared for it, deal with it, do it wisely, and hopefully get the right performance and results.”
What Else was Said?
The PSV Eindhoven manager Ruud van Nistelrooy’s remarks about Cody Gakpo’s future were downplayed by the Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag.
In response to interest in Gakpo, 23, a forward for PSV, United great Van Nistelrooy acknowledged this week that “there comes a time when you can’t say no.”
Two weeks ago, Ten Hag spoke with British journalists in Spain about the rumours surrounding Gakpo, but an unaware reporter tried to get more information and was ignored.
In the World Cup, Ten Hag remarked, “There were many, many good players.” Van Nistelrooy can make that claim about a lot of players.
Although there was uncertainty regarding a deal for top attacking target Antony during the summer, United held informal discussions about Gakpo. Nevertheless, United ultimately acquired the Brazilian from Ajax for £85.51 million.
United’s Premier League Return
Nottingham Forest travel to Old Trafford for the first time in 23 years on Tuesday for United’s first Premier League game in 44 days, with Ten Hag’s side fifth and three points off a Champions League spot with a game in hand.
Qualifying for the Champions League is the minimum goal for Ten Hag’s first season, and if United fails to do so, it will be the first time since 1992 that they have spent two consecutive seasons outside the competition.