Man United decide to sack ten Hag regardless of Cup final outcome

Manchester United have decided to sack Erik ten Hag after the FA Cup final against Manchester City.

In an echo of United parting company with Louis van Gaal despite winning the FA Cup in 2016, it is understood that even beating City at Wembley on Saturday will not save Ten Hag.

The ruthless decision to change manager will be the most significant move made by Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his allies since Ineos agreed to take a minority stake in the club last December and assumed control of football operations. United, who appointed Ten Hag two years ago, have felt compelled to act after ending a fraught campaign eighth in the Premier League, their lowest finish since 1990.

The team’s struggles this season have caused faith in Ten Hag to dwindle. United will have a last shot at qualifying for Europe when they face City – causing an upset against the champions would earn a place in the Europa League – but the hierarchy do not want to make a decision based on one game.

The challenge for Ten Hag, who has said he has already met with Ratcliffe and the minority owner’s advisers to review the season, will be ensuring his players are not distracted by the noise around his position. For United, the focus will soon switch to picking a replacement for the former Ajax manager. They are considering Thomas Tuchel, Mauricio Pochettino, Ipswich Town’s Kieran McKenna, England’s Gareth Southgate, Graham Potter and Brentford’s Thomas Frank.

The next manager will need to work in the new structure United are implementing. Ratcliffe’s close advisers include Sir Dave Brailsford, the acting chief executive Jean-Claude Blanc and the technical director Jason Wilcox. Omar Berrada is due to take over as chief executive, Dan Ashworth as sporting director.

Tuchel is regarded as the frontrunner but it is understood United have held exploratory talks with Pochettino. They have also spoken to representatives of McKenna, who has been targeted by Chelsea and Brighton.


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