Realistically how brutal does Erik Ten Hag need to be?

fastwalker

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Just when you think that United have sunk to a new low, we find a new bottom. The one redeeming feature of a 4-0 defeat to Brighton is the sense of outrage amongst United fans. Even if the club's standards have fallen through the floor the fans standards have not.

Clearly it is not possible to have a wholesale clear out in one season. The transition to whatever becomes the new normal will take time, probably longer than anyone thinks. Those who believe that Ten Hag might be able to transform this relatively quickly are deluding themselves. Nothing about the capitulation this season suggests that it will be fixed anytime soon.

In recent weeks we have seen reports that Ten Hag may be minded to give under-performing players a second chance, but looking to next season and beyond how brutal do you think Erik Ten Hag need to be? When he arrives does he need to call out the pundit enablers in the media like Gary Neville and Rio Ferdinand both of whom refused to call out the last manager when he was clearly failing? Does he call out the historical failures and poor decision-making within the club's hierarchy? Does he continue with Rangnick's public condemnation of players who contribute to the culture of toxicity at the club? Does he announce publicly the players that are not part of his plans? How brutal does he need to be?
 

Adam-Utd

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Not sure he will start with brutality tbh.

He will come in and try to to pick them up first, give every body a chance to prove themselves and see who has the fight.

From that point he will decide who he likes/wants to stay and we work from there.

I suspect we will let 7/8 go this year and then bring in 3/4 if possible, then shape the squad around where he thinks we’re struggling.
 

padzilla

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He needs to be given time to implement his changes, most fans will give him time but this place will be a bloodbath at times too.
 

kouroux

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The changes needed at the club require too much investment and time for one summer window so a lot of his work will be to build up the confidence of all the remaining players and add a few players on top of that.
He cannot afford to be too ruthless too early otherwise he will lose them very sensitive players
 

youmeletsfly

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He will be mildly aggressive with the ones fecking around and not giving their all.
Other than that, being "brutal" with employees these days doesn't exist anymore due to the massive pussy out driven by social media in the last 15 years.

If he starts being the king left and right, he'll quickly dig his own grave. Just get rid of the idiots and try to get the others onboard, it's that simple.
 

Tavern in the town

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Looking at our squad (minus players who are leaving) we have: Maguire, Varane, Shaw, Fred, Bruno, Sancho and Ronaldo who have at some point looked very good for either us, their previous team or their national team. These are not bad players, they’re being made to look bad by managers who shouldn’t have been allowed anywhere near the job.

There will be no major culling and rightly so. I think we’ll surprise a lot of people next season because while it feels like rock bottom now, our squad hasn’t suddenly turned shite. We’re better than people think, 3 signings and we’ll walk top 4.
 

Adisa

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He cannot trust a single player at this club. Think about that. He needs a lot of patience.
 

IrishMcD

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In an idea world, with a the financial backing a club like this should be able to give it manager, it would be fantastic to see him absolutely tear this squad apart. There are actually so few players that are likeable. And bar Varane, Sancho and Ronaldo who only came in last summer, none of the others deserve a chance “to put it right”. They’ve had their chances.
 

Bebestation

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I don't think he needs to be brutal.

If he has such an obvious philosophy and style to his play -

I think the best he can do is try buy some players that play his type of football naturally (maybe his ex ajax players) and see who out of the United squad is able to adapt too.

The United players that don't adapt or good enough can be sold.
 

Fergies Gum

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He cannot trust a single player at this club. Think about that. He needs a lot of patience.
He definitely knows by now who some of the snakes are. Last week he had been having private conversations with some of the players to tell them the slate will be wiped clean. Guess what, that ended up getting leaked.
 

m1tch

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He can't be brutal to begin with. He's got virtually no information about the squad that he can trust his reputation and career goals with.

His thinking will have to be along the lines of:
1. For a shit manager virtually all the players are shit. Shit manager's report confirms that 90% of the squad is shit.
2. Some of those players will be shit regardless of the manager.
3. It's impractical to replace all the players in one go, so it'll be better to concentrate on bringing in the right players before weeding the current squad.
 

Von Mistelroum

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He can't be brutal as we don't have the funds or the owners that would allow something like that. There's also the target glaring problem that the majority of the players we need to move on are so blatantly terrible and overpaid that nobody is likely to take them.

With that in mind, Ten Hag needs to prioritise and I would say that while it's important to get rid of the back up players who have somehow been rewarded for being nowhere close to the required level with new contracts, it's maybe more important to stop filling our actual starting lineup with players who are terrible but somehow think they have made it and don't need to bother because they're guaranteed to play.

For this reason, I would be looking to move on AWB, Rashford and McTominay first of all. I would consider adding Maguire but then you almost have to include Varane too and let's face it, these are not happening.
 

PSV

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I reckon he'll shift a few players that won't (ever) fit his system this summer and then he'll get rid of the ones that don't adapt next summer.
 

Crashoutcassius

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He needs to be given time to implement his changes, most fans will give him time but this place will be a bloodbath at times too.
I'm not so sure. This is the first time the club have hired the fan favourite. The fans like rangnick and are in threads yesterday saying Ralf can't possibly be expected to not get thrashed by Brighton with the squad ole left him. ETH has years worth of excuses to avail of. I just hope he isn't as weak minded as I perceive Ralf to be and takes responsibility right away, even if it invites pressure. Ralfs approach has been very bad for performances. ETH needs to take responsibility from day one and if there is pressure the board need to be strong enough to weather it. That is how a real club is run
 

sunama

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He needs to be given time to implement his changes, most fans will give him time but this place will be a bloodbath at times too.
We need to accept a bottom half finish next season and then give him 3 years additionally to get us in the top 3.
Will he be given that time? I don't think so and here's why:

MUFC board and the Business
He is an unproven manager in a top club and because this is a business, if he does not reach his targets, he WILL be fired. No question about that.
The fact that he is unproven will mean that the board will give him less time. Guardiola, for example, would be given a lot of leeway because it is understood that he will eventually get things right. A manager with less pedigree (like ETH) will likely be fired if it looks like he is failing, as he has no track record of managing a top club and taking them to the top.

The Fans
Will the fans give him time?
Nope.
I know how fans are and they won't change. Fans turn quickly.
They turned quickly on Moyes.
They turned on LVG (with his boring football, even though he won a trophy).
They turned on Jose (even though we won 2 trophies with him).
And we turned on Ole, after getting pumped by Liverpool, MCFC, LCFC, Watford and many other teams.

When you add all of the above to the fact that ETH has no track record of managing a big club, with big egos and big players, the odds are HEAVILY against him. I cannot emphasise this enough. He is walking into the lion's den with nothing more than loincloth to protect him.
I expect him to be fired within 3 years (just as better managers than him have been fired previously).

I realise that there may be young fans here, who "believe", but part of growing up is that you need to understand that things don't always work out, especially when the odds are heavily stacked against you/us.

PS. before anybody thinks I am anti-ETH - this is not the case. I voted in several polls that at this time, ETH is absolutely the best available candidate for the job and I want him to do well.
 

sunama

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I reckon he'll shift a few players that won't (ever) fit his system this summer and then he'll get rid of the ones that don't adapt next summer.
You seriously think that the board will allow him to sell Maguire and Rashford?
I think he'll be told to work with certain players who aren't good enough, just as all previous managers have been told to do.
 

TrustInJanuzaj

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His first and possibly biggest challenge is getting the players on board and helping to improve their confidence again. If he wants them to buy into his system they have to feel more confident and start pulling in the right direction. He he can’t manage that he isn’t worth his salary and he will really struggle to get over his ideas. I’m confident he will manage it.
 

Toblerone92

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Our current squad is nowhere near as bad as people think. You have to remember this is a mismatched group of players that has had no quality coaching for years now, no football philosophy, no defined play style. Nothing. They are all bereft of confidence and I highly doubt as professionals they are happy with recent performances.

Brutality is not the answer. At least not initially. ETH needs to spend time with the players and try and lift a dejected squad before deciding who is suitable and who is not. Coming in swinging a sword isn’t going to do us any good, despite what everyone on here thinks. That said, some players clearly aren’t good enough and will have to go, but I have faith in ETH to figure that out for himself over the summer and into next season.
 

Red_Aaron

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Doesn't necessarily need to be brutal but he certainly needs to put a marker down, be consistent and not allow any leeway on standards.

Fergie was a genius in many ways but the setting of a basic standard and the insistence that everyone kept to it was the reason his squad turnover was often seamless and very little in the way of disharmony existed.

He needs to pull everything together not create further division
 

UnrelatedPsuedo

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Evictions based on personality. Cut out the irredeemable immediately, however talented.

Second chances given to those with good attitudes. They don’t have to have talent that will see them survive two seasons. Just ensure they have the character to move us forward as better players come in.
 

Someone

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A good manager starts by building trust and setting expectations. I won't be surprised to see current underfarmers do well with ETH.
 

Ollie Derbyshire

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If he doesn’t start brutal he‘ll soon realise he needs to be with this lot, total squad of melts. No backbone any of them. It’s unbelievable to think we could argue that everyone of them should be replaced in the first XI. Total joke.
 

sullydnl

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Obviously he'll have to give some under-performing players a chance, because he will still be depending on a lot of those under-performing players over the coming few seasons. And publicly calling them out is antithetical to that. He has to work with and publicly defend those players still in his squad, even if he's hard on them in private.

"Those still in his squad" being the key point. He doesn't have to be brutal with the players or have public fallouts with anyone, but he does need to excise the most toxic personalities from the group as quickly as possible. "Get rid of the cnuts", as Ferguson once said. And that requires being decisive.

If that happens then he shouldn't need to be brutal with the players, because you can make do with players who have a good attitude but who ultimately aren't good enough.
 

Flying high

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We have to bring in 2 forwards. We have to bring in 2 CM/DMs. We'll need at least 1 new defender. We'll probably need a new GK too, even assuming De Gea stays.

That's a minimum of 6 just to fill the holes in the squad.

I'm not sure ruthlessness, in terms of quickly shipping them out, is going to be possible without risking relegation. He will have to tread a little carefully, simply because of the fragile state of the squad.
 

SER19

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He needs to be Atilla the Hun brutal. Scorched earth. I don't think that starting the season with an entire new squad would leave us worse off. Obviously that won't happen and theres a couple of players you'd be sorry to lose but there are no foundations worth building on. An unprecedented gutting of an entire squad would not disimprove us and would remove the toxic poison that seems to have infected everyone even the better players. Again it won't happen but 16 out and 16 in wouldn't be the risk it would at another club. There is no system, there is no chemistry to lose
 

Kingofwinners

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He needs to be Atilla the Hun brutal. Scorched earth. I don't think that starting the season with an entire new squad would leave us worse off. Obviously that won't happen and theres a couple of players you'd be sorry to lose but there are no foundations worth building on. An unprecedented gutting of an entire squad would not disimprove us and would remove the toxic poison that seems to have infected everyone even the better players. Again it won't happen but 16 out and 16 in wouldn't be the risk it would at another club. There is no system, there is no chemistry to lose

This is exactly right, if we do a slow turnover it will be hard to reset the culture. The going in assumption should be almost all out. If someone shows attitude ability and hunger maybe they earn the right to be given a chance. But anyone that does not 1000% want to fight needs to just leave. Sometimes in business you have to just recognise your losses and clear out dead wood so you can start something productiv.
 

croadyman

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Demonstrate the same level of ruthlessness we saw when Guardiola just utterly discarded Hart
 

VidaRed

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Unless he guts the squad he's facing an uphill battle.
 

SungSam7

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Not sure he will start with brutality tbh.

He will come in and try to to pick them up first, give every body a chance to prove themselves and see who has the fight.

From that point he will decide who he likes/wants to stay and we work from there.

I suspect we will let 7/8 go this year and then bring in 3/4 if possible, then shape the squad around where he thinks we’re struggling.
This.

Most importantly, he must be given time! He is clearly a good manager and has put Ajax on the map. It is going to be a long road but patience is key.

With the players we have now, we can be easily fooled into thinking that the manager is getting it wrong, we just need to wait till he gets rid of the clowns who arent doing what is expected.
 

Counterfactual

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If he guts the squad and brings in a ton of players most on here will expect us to be challenging for the league. Probably wiser not to do that even if it were possible. Some departures, some arrivals and a better showing next season is probably the way to go.
 

AndySmith1990

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He needs to be as brutal as is necessary to achieve success. That means no holding on to dross like Lingard because "he runs around a lot, no picking McTominay because he came up from the academy, no starting Rashford because he thinks he's a global superstar. You work for the team and follow instructions or you're out.
 

SER19

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This is exactly right, if we do a slow turnover it will be hard to reset the culture. The going in assumption should be almost all out. If someone shows attitude ability and hunger maybe they earn the right to be given a chance. But anyone that does not 1000% want to fight needs to just leave. Sometimes in business you have to just recognise your losses and clear out dead wood so you can start something productiv.
Yes this is what we've seen. New exciting faces, slowly morph into the toxic culture that dominates already
 

mu4c_20le

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Does he continue with Rangnick's public condemnation of players who contribute to the culture of toxicity at the club? Does he announce publicly the players that are not part of his plans? How brutal does he need to be?
I think many will be surprised at how the players respond to an actual coach. Some will be let go as they've been here too long and lost the hunger, but many so called under-performers will make some here look stupid.
 

kouroux

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I hope the fanbase will be patient with him if he doesn't start burning bridges. It will take several transfer to hopefully course correct things
 

BaneIsPain

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Send them to gulag but no. I think ETH has some idea which player will be part of his team and which one will no longer be suitable to play for United. I’m sure he wants to contain the ‘player power’.