Erik ten Hag is looking forward to reuniting with Donny van de Beek at Manchester United | Soccer

Erik ten Hag managed Man Utd flop Donny van de Beek at Ajax

Erik ten Hag managed Man Utd’s flop Donny van de Beek at Ajax (Pictures: Getty)

Erik ten Hag insists he is “excited” to be working with his former. Ajax player Donny van de Beek at Manchester United.

Van de Beek thrived under Ten Hag in Holland, making 175 appearances for the Dutch giants and helping them win the Eredivisie title and reach the semi-finals of the Champions League.

The Netherlands international was set to continue his development at Manchester United after making a £40million move from Ajax in the summer of 2020.

But Van de Beek endured a miserable spell at Old Trafford – scoring two goals in 27 Premier League games – before he was loaned to Everton in January.

The 25-year-old said he hopes to prove his critics wrong at Goodison Park but has struggled with form and fitness. He made just seven appearances and scored his only goal in the 5-1 defeat by Arsenal on the final day.

Van de Beek will now return to Manchester United and hope to revive his stalled career under ex-boss Ten Hag, who has signed a three-year deal with the Premier League giants.

Ten Hag addressed reporters at his first press conference on Monday afternoon and was asked if he was looking forward to working with Van de Beek again.

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“Yes, of course,” said the new Red Devils manager. “We had a fantastic team at Ajax during that time.

“I had a really good relationship with him and obviously I’m looking forward to meeting him again on the pitch.”

Ten Had won three Dutch titles in his five-year tenure at Ajax but is taking charge of a Manchester United squad that has gone five consecutive seasons without a trophy.

Under former manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and interim boss Ralf Rangnick, United finished sixth in the Premier League this season, recording their lowest total points since 1990.

When asked what excites him about his move to Old Trafford, Ten Hag added: “First of all we want to make the fans proud. Secondly, of course we are in this moment, the current situation is obviously not so good.

“It’s a big challenge. I want to build and construct a team that fights for each other, that is united and gets results.

“We also play in the theater of dreams. We want to entertain. But in the end it’s about playing fantastic football. If we can’t play fantastic football, we still have to win.”

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Manchester United Erik ten Hag is looking forward to reuniting with Donny van de Beek at Manchester United | Soccer

Nate Jones

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