Manchester United on Thursday officially announced the arrival of Eric Ten Hag as coach for next season. It was revealed in Ajax Amsterdam, that the Dutch coach admires Pep Guardiola, whom he met at Bayern Munich.
Appeared in the Champions League
Eric Ten Hag is not used to hanging out. It was during his first European campaign, in the biggest competition of all, that he appeared in the eyes of the world. From the group stage, Ajax Amsterdam stood against Bayern Munich and got two draws. The Dutch coach even said after the first match: “I’ll be honest: we should have won.”
In the knockout stage, Ajax pushed Real Madrid, winning 4-1 in the second leg at the Bernabeu, and Juventus, with success there also over the opponent. Then the Batavians followed football led by Tadic, de Jong, Zisch, Neres, Van de Beek, de Ligt and others. It took a hat-trick from Lucas Moura and a Spurs goal after extra time to knock Ajax out of the competition, seconds after securing his ticket to the final.
Terminated the position of director of the Eredivisie Premier League with Utrecht
After his first experience as a No. 1 coach with the Go Ahead Eagles, with whom he witnessed promotion in the First Division, Ten Hag started at the Eredivisie with Utrecht, in the summer of 2015. Going back to his time of experience in Germany, he successfully implemented his own playing principles. Up front, Sebastian Haller stacks pawns, 30 in two league seasons, and the small club flirts with the big ones.
Utrecht finished fifth in the first season of Ten Hag, who was named the best coach in the Eredivisie. During the next practice he did a little better and went to 4th place synonymous with qualifying for the European League. It is enough to open the doors of the largest club in the country, Ajax Amsterdam, who comes to pick him up in Utrecht.
He coached Bayern Munich with
Between his stints with the Go Ahead Eagles and at Utrecht, Eric ten Hag risked moving away from the Netherlands and joining Germany, where he led the Bayern Munich B team for two years (2013-2015). “When I left the Eredivisie to train in Zone (D4), many people in the Netherlands were skeptical, Ten Hag admitted in an interview with the German daily Bild. But I never regretted my decision.”
In Munich, the Dutchman rages shoulders with Pep Guardiola, Bayern’s first coach. “Working at such a big club, with strong personalities like Guardiola or Summer, was like winning the lottery.”
Bayern has always been watching him
After his time at the helm of the second team of the Bavarians, and even more after his European annexation with Ajax, Bayern Munich several times thought about bringing Erik ten Hag back to Bavaria. At the end of 2019, first, the German leaders wanted him to succeed Niko Kovac, thanks. But Ten Hag, at that time, decided to extend with Ajax and put an end to the rumors.
Last summer, he was again on the shortlist for Bayern Munich in case Julian Nagelsmann’s progress did not come to fruition. Earlier, the Dutchman also dismissed Tottenham, who saw themselves signing him to take over from Jose Mourinho. It was finally necessary to wait for long negotiations with Manchester United for Ten Hag to decide to leave the Netherlands again.
He’s a Guardiola fan and Cruyff’s student
During his time at Bayern Munich, Erik Ten Hag crossed with Pep Guardiola. Without talking to each other every day, they had the opportunity to exchange on several occasions. “I learned a lot from Guardiola, I knew Ten Hag in 2019. His philosophy is exciting. What he did at Barcelona, Bayern and now at City, this is the structure I tried to put in Ajax.” He remains Dutch model Johan Cruyff, but the Catalan is a clear inspiration.
Inspiration makes him feel good. In recent months, Guardiola has not stopped praising the qualities of his counterpart. “Are you asking me if Eric Ten Hag could be here in City? Sure.” Then recently. “Pour voir ses qualités, il suffit de jeter un oeil à son équipe de l’Ajax ces dernières années. C’est une joie à regarder et dans de nombreux matchs, pas seulement l’année où arri-ilés de sont Champions League.”
It calls for iron discipline
When he gets somewhere, Ten Hag tends to want to impose his ideas and vision. This earned him the nickname “Little General” in the past. When he arrived at the Go Ahead Eagles in 2012, when he was starting first, he didn’t hesitate to make several requests to the club: to buy 30 beds so the players could nap and exercise more, open a window in his office to look at the players’ building, etc. that.
The Dutchman is a hard worker, and on the plane returning from Madrid, after a massive victory in the Champions League, he was able to watch the match of Fortuna Sittard, his future opponent in the league. He expects similar investment from his players, but then pays them, wherever he is, the results come in the end.