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30/12/2023 18:07

Ten Hag lists what Ineos will bring to Manchester United’s football operations

Erik ten Hag is confident Ineos’s experience in other sporting fields will benefit Manchester United .

Ineos are awaiting regulatory approval from the Premited League for their minority stake of 29% in United, with the petrochemicals group set to invest an initial £1.3billion.

The company founded by boyhood United fan Sir Jim Ratcliffe will run football operations at the club, having embarked on sporting ventures in football, cycling, sailing, racing and marathon running.

Ineos own Ligue 1’s second-placed side Nice, Swiss club FC Lausanne-Sport, cycling outfit Team Sky was rebranded as the Ineos Grenadiers, Ineos are the principal partner of the McLaren Formula One team and Ratcliffe is bankrolling Sir Ben Ainslie’s quest to win the America’s Cup, having funded Eliud Kipchoge’s record marathon run in under two hours.

“I can say in this moment I’m looking forward to the talks with them,” Ten Hag reiterated. “In other clubs, they have experience in other sports, they have a lot of experience, a lot about performance, a lot of knowledge, so I’m really looking forward to [seeing] how they can contribute and I’m sure they can.

“Football is a very complicated sport, especially at the top, so I’m sure they will contribute, they will help us to achieve our high ambitions.

“From the start of the process I was kept informed, first by (former chief executive) Richard Arnold and later on by (interim chief executive) Patrick Stewart so I know everything,

“I know every detail, how the meetings and talks and agreements are. Now it just has to settle down and give us some time. I have to talk with them and not with you about this and then we will see but I’m sure I’m very positive about the messages I have been given.”

Ten Hag said his press conference would have run to 45 minutes had he gone through all the setbacks United have incurred this season. United have recorded 34 separate cases of injury or illness that have caused players to miss games.

“We have had 10 partnerships at centre-back for instance,” Ten Hag noted. “That’s only one thing. But I’ve said many more times – that can’t be an excuse. We have to win every game.

“Sometimes we were pragmatic but against Villa, for instance, you see our style, you see our identity, how we can play, also how we can build up from the back. We have a lot of things that can really help us and that we can be confident about and have a big belief in this group of players.

United came from 2-0 down to beat Villa 3-2
United came from 2-0 down to beat Villa 3-2

“We have a good team, we have a good spirit, we can deal with the setbacks. If there are players coming back we will be stronger and we can also make this season a success.”

United will not head abroad for a winter training camp during their mid-season break. United do not have a Premier League game after the visit of Tottenham on January 14 until the trip to Wolves on February 1 but they will continue to conduct training sessions at Carrington.

During the World Cup last year, United headed to Cadiz for a week-long camp and they also spent the best part of a week in Marbella during a 16-day gap between games in February 2020.

“It’s a different season,” Ten Hag stressed. “Last year there was the World Cup so we went there with a group of players who were not involved in the World Cup and gave them some weeks off before. Now is totally different.

“The players are loaded in games so we have to make a very good programme about giving the players rest and time for relax. And also set the right programme to prepare for the second half of the season.”

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