Erik ten Hag reveals the advice he gave Rasmus Hojlund to break barren streak

  • Hojlund scored his first Premier League goal to help Man Utd beat Aston Villa on Boxing Day
  • Alejandro Garnacho dragged Red Devils level before Hojlund's late winner
  • United manager Ten Hag insists "the goals will come" after Dane's tough start in England
Hojlund ended his barren run in the Premier League
Hojlund ended his barren run in the Premier League / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Erik ten Hag says he reminded Rasmus Hojlund of his goalscoring exploits for Denmark and in the Champions League before the Manchester United striker ended his barren run in the Premier League with the winner against Aston Villa on Boxing Day.

20-year-old summer arrival Hojlund struck five times in the UCL group stages but had not netted in England's top flight before Tuesday night. The goal, which completed a comeback victory after Alejandro Garnacho's brace had cancelled out efforts from John McGinn and Leander Dendoncker, was also his first in eight games.

"I have had several talks with him," Ten Hag said after the 3-2 victory. "I pointed out that you scored for Denmark a lot, you scored in the Champions League, you have demonstrated the ability, so you can do it. Believe in it and it will come.

"I am sure now the first goal is in, he will get more."

Asked how the bad run affected Hojlund in recent weeks, Ten Hag added: "Of course, when strikers don't score that is always a problem but he has a strong character and is always so determined. He has a big personality and that is what a striker needs. And when you keep investing, the goals will come."

Erik ten Hag
Ten Hag's United earned a comeback win / James Gill - Danehouse/GettyImages

Hojlund found the back of the net in his 15th Premier League game, while United had also failed to score in their previous four matches before Garnacho reduced the deficit. The Dane called himself the "happiest man alive" speaking after the win.

The dramatic result helped Man Utd move up to sixth in the table, only three points behind Manchester City albeit having played two more games than their local rivals. They will look to keep the positive momentum going in their next outing at Nottingham Forest on Saturday evening.