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Erik ten Hag: Manchester United failed the “most difficult thing in football” against Burnley



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Credit: Manchester United

Erik ten Hag has explained that he feels Manchester United failed the “most difficult thing in football” during the club’s 1-1 draw with Burnley on Saturday afternoon.

Following their thrilling 4-2 comeback triumph against Sheffield United in midweek, Manchester United supporters were brimming with anticipation as they welcomed Burnley to Old Trafford for a Premier League clash.

The game witnessed both sides creating numerous promising opportunities, yet the score remained deadlocked throughout the first 80 minutes. It wasn’t until late in the match that Antony seized upon a loose pass to give United the lead.

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However, a defensive miscue between Casemiro and André Onana gifted Burnley a penalty just five minutes after United’s breakthrough. Zeki Amdouni made no mistake from the spot, ensuring the contest ended in a 1-1 draw.

Speaking after the game, Erik ten Hag admitted that he is disappointed in the result that leaves his men just one point above Newcastle United, who are seventh in the league.

“No. Definitely not. Of course, we are disappointed,” he told reporters after the game. “If, over a long period in the game, when you control and dominate the game, when you create loads of chances and put yourself in a winning position but then give it away in the end.”

Continuing, the Dutch manager explained that he thinks his team lost control of the tie on multiple occasions, gifting Burnley their equaliser.

“Ours was a strong start to the game, but in the second part of the first half, we lost control. We came back into the game and had good chances as well, but André saved us a couple of times. The second half again was all ours, with loads of chances, but you could say, by the end of it, we gave the game away. It’s very frustrating. It shouldn’t happen.”

He also reckoned that putting yourselves in a winning position is the “most difficult” thing to do in football and that United failed as they could not hold on to their lead until the final whistle.

“Again, we put ourselves in a winning position, the most difficult [thing] in football, and, in many phases of the game, we did very good. Then, in the end, we have to take three points and keep a clean sheet. But we gave it away. It’s very frustrating.”