Connect with us


Erik ten Hag explains two reasons why Scott McTominay captains Man United vs Liverpool



| Last Updated:


Credit: Man Utd

Erik ten Hag has given Manchester United captaincy to Scott McTominay ahead of their Premier League clash against Liverpool at Anfield.

Bruno Fernandes is unavailable for the game after receiving his fifth yellow card of the season in the previous league fixture against Bournemouth.

Despite Raphael Varane wearing the armband in pre-season whilst Fernandes was on the bench, it is midfielder McTominay who has the honour to captain the side at Anfield.

The Scotsman is the United’s top goalscorer this term. Whilst there have been arguments about the implications of him leaving his midfield position to attack the box, this game presents more freedom for McTominay, who is the most advanced in the engine room.

Sofyan Amrabat anchors the midfield again, and he is joined by Kobbie Mainoo. The pair will be starting together for the first time and Mainoo has been trusted by Ten Hag to become the youngest-ever player to start for the club in this fixture through Premier League history.

McTominay’s attacking contributions could be key for United to get anything from the game, which still seems unlikely.

Ten Hag was speaking to club media ahead of the game about McTominay’s captaincy, and he explained that his communication and desire are two key reasons behind the decision.

“Absolutely [he has earned it],” he stated. “I think he is one of the examples of what it means to play for Manchester United, to play with the badge on his heart.

“He is an example, and the others can take that and build on him. I’m sure he will be a communicator; I’m sure he will be an example of passion and desire, and you need that in these games.”

The Reds will be eager to put right the embarrassing result of 7-0 from last season but Liverpool are challenging at the top of the table whilst United linger outside the top four spots.

“We are used to it [the atmosphere],” added Ten Hag. “We have the experience to deal with such circumstances. If I have to motivate the players for this game, they’re not in the right place.

“You could smell it around the last few days at Carrington, everyone is so eager to play this game.”