Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag makes defiant statement after 'direct message' from INEOS

Erik ten Hag’s Man Utd future is hanging in the balance (Image: Getty)

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag insists that INEOS chiefs have ‘directly’ informed him that he will be part of the club’s rebuild going forward. That’s despite intense speculation surrounding the Dutchman’s future, with suggestions that he could be dismissed even if they beat Manchester City in Saturday’s FA Cup final.

Some reports indicate that Ten Hag’s sacking has already been decided by senior figures at Old Trafford. The manager himself claims that crucial talks with the owners have already taken place, and he plans to leave the country for a holiday the day after the trip to Wembley.

Whether that is as a farewell to England or a welcomed rest ahead of next season remains to be seen. But Ten Hag claims that Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his INEOS team have made it clear, at least to him, that he will be part of United’s future.

“INEOS told me that they want to change everything and that they want to rebuild with me,” Ten Hag told Voetbal International. “This is what they told me directly.”

Addressing the fierce criticism he has faced with season, having led United to their lowest Premier League finish in more than three decades, Ten Hag continued: “The club is either loved or hated, there is no in-between.

“So when things go badly, they all start talking and talking with very big words. All this negativism from these so called experts who don’t have the capability to analyse something with facts, but who prefer to attack people to make themselves look better. And these same people were the ones who gave me a pat on the back last year.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has a tough decision to make on Erik ten Hag’s Man Utd future (Image: Getty)

“Last year I was able to walk on water, this year I am the worst manager in the Premier League! Manchester United won the league for the last time in 2013, 11 years ago. But still they expect us to win every game while competing at the top. This club is not ready for that.”

United only won 18 of their 38 Premier League matches this term, finishing eighth and outside the European qualification spots. However, a win over local rivals City at Wembley would grant them entry to next season’s Europa League.

The Red Devils head to London as the rank outsiders, with City high on confidence after sewing up their fourth consecutive Premier League title. Pep Guardiola’s side are aiming to become the first team to win back-to-back league and FA Cup doubles.

United and City also met in last season’s FA Cup final, with Ilkay Gundogan scoring twice – including a 13-second opener – to clinch a 2-1 victory for the Sky Blues en route to their stunning silverware treble.