Scott McTominay says toxicity at Man Utd is no longer an issue under Erik ten Hag | Football News

Manchester United must beat Bayern Munich at home on Tuesday and hope Galatasaray draw at FC Copenhagen to qualify out of Group A in the Champions League; United then face Liverpool at Anfield in the Premier League on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Premier League and Main Event

By Zinny Boswell, @ZinnyBoswell


Scott McTominay says the Manchester United dressing room is no longer toxic under Erik ten Hag and the squad is firmly behind the manager.

McTominay, who has worked under Jose Mourinho, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick, admits it has been a problem under previous coaches at Old Trafford.

But the midfielder has come out and defended Ten Hag amid reports of a split in the squad ahead of a huge week for the United manager, insisting he has changed the culture at the club.

Man Utd’s big week

  • Manchester United must beat Bayern Munich at home on Tuesday December 12 and hope Galatasaray draw at FC Copenhagen to qualify out of Group A in the Champions League.
  • United then return to Anfield – the scene of their 7-0 thrashing last season – to face Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday, live on Sky Sports.

Asked how the squad could end the cycle of managers being sacked at Old Trafford, McTominay said: “It is the players’ responsibility. We know that as well.

“We have big characters in the dressing room. It is not like the other managers when it has been toxic at times. The boys are firmly behind the manager.

“Players can get lost in translation, we just want to do well for the football club. It is as simple as that.”

Ten Hag: Our team gives me hope that we can beat Bayern

United head into Tuesday’s must-win Champions League game against Bayern Munich on the back of a dismal 3-0 defeat to Bournemouth at Old Trafford in the Premier League.

But Ten Hag still has faith in his misfiring squad, who are also relying on Galatasaray and FC Copenhagen to draw in the other Group A game to qualify for the knockout phase.

“Our team gives me hope,” said the United manager. “We are not consistent but we have also very good performances and highs. When we get it, we are able to beat any opponent.”

Man Utd team news vs Bayern Munich

  • Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial missed training on Monday due to illlness.
  • Rashford also missed training on Friday but was well enough to make the bench against Bournemouth on Saturday.
  • Victor Lindelof trained despite coming off injured against Chelsea last week.
  • Lisandro Martinez trained on his own on Monday but is running on the grass as he continues his recovery from his long-term foot injury.

Pressed on what gives him belief that his side can become the first to beat Bayern in a Champions League group game since 2017, Ten Hag said: “The game against Chelsea, Everton. The game against Galatasaray. I know this team can perform at really high levels.

“It is not that we did it three months ago, we did it last week. When we have the right mood, spirit and everyone is ready for it, then we are able to do it.”

He added: “Old Trafford is not a nice place to come for an opponent. But we know it starts with us.

“There is a very strong bond between the team and the fans, they are always behind us, even when we have setbacks. We have to take the responsibility and energise the fans.”

Tuchel: I sympathise with Ten Hag, Man Utd will bounce back

Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel says he sympathises with his Man Utd counterpart Erik ten Hag ahead of their Champions League meeting on Tuesday

Opposite number Thomas Tuchel, whose Bayern side suffered an embarrassing defeat of their own to Frankfurt on Saturday, offered sympathy to Ten Hag in his pre-match press conference.

“I sympathise with all my colleagues no matter whether they have a change of ownership or not. I know it’s sometimes demanding, and sometimes more difficult than it looks from outside,” he said.

“I think I know what it takes to manage big clubs and big players, and it’s sometimes demanding and sometimes there are periods where you feel stuck or the changes are not coming quickly enough for you as a coach. That’s why I sympathise really for my colleague – but not tomorrow.

“We will try to beat him, and use this stage to make the next step in our development, we still have a long way to go and need to be very tough to withstand this energy and the club that is here. I’m pretty sure Man Utd will bounce back like always.”

Neville: Man Utd must stick with Ten Hag

The Gary Neville podcast discusses the problems at Manchester United and how the club is crying out for a competent sporting structure to deal effectively with recruitment

Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville:

“I fear for Erik ten Hag generally – not just because of this week. [Facing] Bayern Munich and Liverpool should take care of itself. What will happen, will happen.

“A cycle is repeating itself again: manager has a half-decent season, he gets a lot of power. There’s no control above him to say ‘no’ when he wants players, there’s no strength of leadership, a manager then takes over and signs his own players that he favours.

“We’ve seen it with Louis van Gaal, Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. But coaches and managers aren’t the heads of recruitment.

“They lean towards certain players they may have worked with before, and they try to merge them into a team with players that another manager has signed.

“The players then don’t look like they fit together, the atmosphere becomes a bit toxic, there’s a fall-out or two, then the manager starts to come under a bit of pressure. And then usually, they get sacked.

“I’ve been here so many times over the past six, seven, eight years – and it’s happening again before our eyes.”

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