Plum skin Witch Says Manchester United should play Champions League Football next season emphasizes that “there will be no misunderstanding” about their need to return to Europe’s best table.
The former Ajax boss, who took over the club on a low drop at the end of last season, has made an impressive comeback at Old Trafford, both in terms of culture and quality.
Final victory of the Carabao Cup against their rivals this weekend Newcastle He saw Ten Hag become the second manager in United history to win a major trophy in his first campaign at the helm.
FA Cup and Europa League provides more opportunities for silverware, but there’s no doubting the importance of the Champions League qualifiers ahead of a trip to Sunday’s top four opponents.
“Let’s get one thing clear, we should play Champions League football,” Ten Hag said.
“A club like Manchester United has to play in the Champions League, so there’s no misunderstanding.”
When asked if being in the Champions League would make United more attractive for summer signings, he said: “Of course we’re more interesting in the Champions League.
“But I still think we’re attractive to players even when we’re not. I noticed that last year when we weren’t in the Champions League.
But I want to point out: we have to be in the Champions League.
“We have two ways. someone Premier LeagueTo be in the top four or to win the Europa League, so those are two ways.”
Third-place United are in a good position to qualify in the Premier League at the moment but will be relegated to the top four if they lose at Newcastle and win at Tottenham Everton on Monday.
Lifting the Europa League trophy in May offers another avenue for a club that has remained attractive despite its recent troubles.
Ten Hag, who faced Sevilla in the quarter-finals of the Europa League, said: “I think Casemiro is a very good example. He won everything, including the Champions League, but he wanted to come to Manchester United.
“Even when playing in the Europa League, this club attracts people, it’s very interesting for them and they want to be a part of this club.”
Brazilian midfielder Casemiro was the most notable signing of the summer, when Antony, Lisandro Martinez, Christian Eriksen and Tyrell Malacia also joined United.
“From my analysis, I think we’re in the right direction, in a good way,” Ten Hag said of the strategy at the club.
“I think we’ve built a base this season, but from now on, of course we need to improve and move forward.
“You can do that by improving the team, and that’s where you have to play better every game, so you can improve your playing style in every practice (session) and that’s what we’re doing.
“We’re also always setting higher demands and standards for our players and we’ll see the rest in the summer.
“But that’s not the focus right now. The focus is now on the style of play, making a better game, making a better style of play, so we have a better chance of winning a match.”
After Anthony Martial’s injury-hit campaign and Cristiano Ronaldo’s debut already hitting a shallow pool, the key area United need to improve this summer is the front.
Wout Weghorst has been heavily supported since his surprise move from Burnley on loan in January and may stay at Old Trafford after the end of the season.
“Of course (he can) and I think he does a lot of football aspects really well,” said Dutch striker Ten Hag, who scored twice in 18 games for United.
“He does a really good job at printing for us. He is the leader of the process in printing, he starts the printing, he is very good at back printing.
“He’s taking other positions, the link game is going really well.
“He makes good moves, he makes room for others, so he’s good at set plays, so he really contributes to the performance of this team.
“And I think after Christmas we played 25 games and lost two games and he played almost every game, so that’s really part of the success.”