Troy Deeney believes Erik ten Hag has four major problems at and claims the Old Trafford boss is ‘convinced’ about just one defender at the club.
Ten Hag has made a mixed start to his United tenure, suffering heavy defeats to Brentford and Manchester City but winning seven of his 11 matches overall.
The 52-year-old has admitted he had a big job on his hands as he bids to turn Manchester United – who have gone five years without silverware – back into title contenders.
Former Premier League striker Deeney reckons Ten Hag still has four big issues at United, one being that Lisandro Martinez is the only defender at his disposal that he is ‘entirely convinced about’.
Deeney told : ‘I like what I see from Erik ten Hag so far but it is clear that he has grave reservations about his backline with Lisandro Martinez the only defender he is entirely convinced about.
‘We do not know yet whether Casemiro is up to speed and whether he is “the answer” to United’s long-standing midfield problem and up front it’s clear Ten Hag hasn’t settled on the central striker or the wide-left player he wants.
‘It will take United two or three good transfer windows until they can truly compete at the very top again.
‘And then there is the problem of off-loading so many good players, on very good money, who have not convinced at Old Trafford.
‘If I was in the position of someone like Aaron Wan-Bissaka — who could end up as a forgotten man — I’d probably sit tight, knowing I’m being paid well. Most players would.’
Following a dismal start to the season, United have won five of their last six Premier League games to climb to fifth in the table.
Erik ten Hag’s side face Newcastle United at Old Trafford on Sunday and Chris Sutton has made his scoreline prediction for the Premier League clash.
‘I don’t think Manchester United will win this. The only question is, will Newcastle take three points home, or just one?’ he told .
‘It’s not that I don’t feel Manchester United are making progress under Erik ten Hag, because they are.
‘But I fancy Newcastle because they have been taking the game to their opposition, and the goals have started to flow – they have scored nine in their past two matches.
‘I can’t see Magpies boss Eddie Howe changing his approach at Old Trafford, because that’s not his style.
‘That should make things more open, which might help Manchester United. The trouble for them is that everyone scrutinizes their every result so much and it is always painted as triumph or disaster, with nothing in between.
‘This week, though, it might be in between. I’m going for a 1-1.’
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