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Erik ten Hag told to avoid Man United decision that will damage ‘team morale’



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Erik ten Hag has been advised to stick with Hannibal Mejbri in Manchester United’s midfield after a strong performance against Burnley by the Tunisian international.

Hannibal, 20, came into the side for the first time after disappointing midfield performances at the start of the season for United.

The young midfielder was placed at the top of a midfield three including Scott McTominay and Casemiro. He was the standout player in the engine room, with his energy and surprising maturity on the ball being useful for Ten Hag.

With upcoming games that they will be expecting to win, The Reds could look to turn a corner and kickstart their season in the coming weeks.

Multiple players are also coming back from injury. Sofyan Amrabat and Raphael Varane appeared off the bench at Turf Moor whilst Mason Mount and Harry Maguire are expected to be available against Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday; Kobbie Mainoo is also weeks away from a return.

However, Ten Hag has been warned that kicking Hannibal out of the starting team after his strong performance is not good for ‘team morale’.

Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood was impressed by the 20-year-old against Burnley and believes he deserves to remain in the team despite players returning from injury.

“A real positive from the performance when I look at the individual performances for Man United? Hannibal, I thought [he] was good,” Sherwood explained when speaking on Premier League Productions.

“He was brave, I thought he looked for the ball wherever he was. Out of possession, he looked like he was going with urgency wherever he was to go and get it back.

“I think he had a great game and he can only get better, I just hope he stays in the team. He earned the right rather than one of the superstars coming back and getting in ahead of him, which is not good for team morale and team spirit.”

Ten Hag is expected to make changes in the Carabao Cup game against Crystal Palace but Hannibal could have convinced the manager to start him in the upcoming Premier League fixture against The Eagles on the weekend.