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Erik ten Hag repaying Man Utd faith as stars find form and consistency

Suraj Radia
Rasmus Hojlund, Scott McTominay, Man Utd
© IMAGO

Rasmus Hojlund scored for the fifth game running to help Manchester United defeat Aston Villa and keep their top four hopes alive, with Erik ten Hag’s side enjoying their strongest run of form all season.

United have been amongst the lowest scorers in the Premier League all season, having netted just 33 times in 24 games, however 15 of those goals have come in the last six matches, with Hojlund finding his feet after a difficult start to life at Old Trafford.

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The 21-year-old’s flurry of goals comes after he failed to score in his first 14 league games, while Alejandro Garnacho and Marcus Rashford have also helped form a cohesive attack for the first time in a difficult season for Ten Hag’s side.

United have lost just once in their last eight games across all competitions and they now sit sixth, six points behind fourth placed Tottenham and having erased a negative goal differential for the first time since August.

Ten Hag was disappointed at not having the means to strengthen his squad in January but the Dutchman has responded well, particularly with key players returning from injury, allowing the United boss to keep a consistent line up during the recent run of form.

While there is still a long way to go before United start getting carried away, the turnaround will be encouraging for Ten Hag and help justify to the new regime under Sir Jim Ratcliffe that he is the right man to lead the team going forward.

United’s star players finally delivering the goods

Along with Hojlund, Rashford’s return to form has been timely and the England international looks ready to put his troubles behind him after enduring criticism on and off the pitch.

Rashford has provided five goal contributions in his last seven appearances, the same as Garnacho, who has made the right wing spot his own at the expense of Antony.

United’s revival has also coincided with the return of Casemiro and the Brazilian has showcased the form that convinced the club to splash out £70 million on him in 2022, winning all four of his games since his comeback from injury.

With super-sub Scott McTominay also scoring two match winners in three games and youngster Kobbie Mainoo providing a youthful yet mature partner to Casemiro in midfield, the pendulum has swung back United’s way and Ten Hag will be determined to ensure the team’s revival is not a false start to a new dawn.

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