Erik ten Hag

Erik ten Hag: 'Manchester United is a great club with great fans'

Scott Saunders
Erik ten Hag has spoken publicly about Man Utd links
Erik ten Hag has spoken publicly about Man Utd links / ANP/GettyImages
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Erik ten Hag has refused to rule out leaving Ajax at the end of the season, as Manchester United continue their search for their next manager.

The 52-year-old Dutchman is one of the two leading candidates for the role in the Old Trafford dugout, alongside Paris Saint-Germain boss Mauricio Pochettino.

90min revealed at the start of March that lines of communication had been opened with Ten Hag, and that the club were impressed with his spell in charge of the Dutch champions. The situation has advanced over the last couple of weeks, with Ten Hag interviewed by the club early in the recent international break.

In a new interview with Sport1, Ten Hag has hinted that discussions took place, and also addressed United specifically - stating it is a "great club with great fans".

When asked about the links to United, Ten Hag responded: "Everyone knows each other in the industry. There are always talks with representatives from other clubs, that's normal. Manchester United is a great club with great fans.

"But I can only repeat myself: My full focus is completely on Ajax. We are already planning for the new season."

When asked if he had set a deadline on when a final decision would be made on his next move, he said: "I've sat down with Ajax after every season so far. That will also be the case this time. I can say that Ajax and Erik ten Hag are very happy with each other at the moment.

"My focus is currently only on Ajax. But in football you never know. I don't want to rule anything out. I'm currently employed here at Ajax to perform. With the cup final against [PSV] Eindhoven, we still have eight finals left, and I need all my energy for that. Anything else would just be a distraction. 

"I know that everything in football can change from one day to the next. If at some point I should decide to take the next step, I hope that people here will understand."

90min understands that some concerns within United have been raised at Ajax's recent elimination to Benfica in the Champions League, though as previously stated the club do respect his philosophy and demeanour.

However, sources still insist that no decision has been made, and that talks with Pochettino have also taken place as United look to conduct a thorough process to hire the correct candidate.

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