Paul Merson fires ‘League Two’ dig at Erik ten Hag and calls out Man Utd ace Fernandes | Football | Sport

Paul Merson has claimed that Erik ten Hag would be lucky to avoid being sacked by a League Two club in a scathing assessment of his Manchester United tenure. The Dutchman has endured a torrid second season in charge of the Red Devils, who sit eight points adrift of the Premier League’s top four after crashing out of Europe earlier in the campaign.

Much of the blame for United’s misfortune has fallen at the feet of Ten Hag, who has struggled to implement a clear playing style during his two years at the helm. He has also been responsible for making a number of poor signings, with Antony the biggest example of Ten Hag’s recruitment not working out as expected.

Merson pointed the finger at Ten Hag following United’s draw with Tottenham last weekend, blaming the 53-year-old for contributing to a drop in standards at Old Trafford. The Arsenal icon wrote in his Sky Sports column: “They are such a long way off the pace. I wasn’t shocked they didn’t beat Spurs on Sunday. It’s just where they are as a club.

“Ten Hag has lost nearly half of his football matches this season. I don’t care if you are managing the bottom side in League Two, with form like that you’d do well to keep your job. It feels like Ten Hag gets the games he needs at just the right time. He gets a game where he can sneak a win and that just keeps his head above water.

“Something has to give soon. Something has to change at Old Trafford. Watching Man Utd, it’s chalk and cheese in comparison to Spurs. At times it looks good, but more often than not there is nothing there.”

Merson went on to dig out United skipper Bruno Fernandes, accusing the Portuguese midfielder of going missing against Tottenham despite being arguably his side’s best player.

“On Sunday against Spurs, I hardly heard Bruno Fernandes’ name but he’s their best player,” added Merson. “He should be on the ball all of the time. Why can’t United find solutions to get him the ball? It’s all so scruffy from United.”

United have only managed to win 10 league games this season and will likely miss out on European qualification unless Ten Hag can turn things around as a matter of urgency. Their campaign has been marred by inconsistency, which has prevented them from building any sort of positive momentum even when they have been playing relatively well.

It remains to be seen whether the Red Devils will be able to put things right over the coming weeks, with a string of winnable games on the horizon. Their next test will be against Newport County in the FA Cup before facing Wolves, West Ham and Luton Town in three of their next four Premier League matches.

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