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Raphael Varane labels two Erik ten Hag strengths amid Man United captaincy change



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Credit: IMAGO / Colorsport

Manchester United defender Raphael Varane recently asserted that manager Erik Ten Hag isn’t afraid of taking the big decisions as he wants a team with character.

Dutch manager Erik Ten Hag has taken some brave decisions since becoming the manager of Manchester United. From benching Cristiano Ronaldo due to constant poor performances to eventually axing from the squad, Ten Hag has always prioritized the team’s overall performance instead of any individual interest.

The 2023 season is yet to start and the former Ajax manager has already replaced fan favorite David de Gea with Andre Onana. He even stripped Harry Maguire off the captaincy and handed over the captain’s armband to Bruno Fernandes.

Former Champions League and World Cup winner Varane has now come in support of his gaffer as he stated that the manager isn’t ‘scared of’ taking any kind of decisions for the betterment of the team.

Speaking to Rob Dawson of ESPN, the Frenchman touched upon Ten Hag’s determination and ability to take responsibility in decision making as two key attributes since he has been at the helm, stating that the manager is the leader of the team.

“He wants a team with character and he’s the leader so he has to show it himself. He’s not scared to take these decisions and take that responsibility. That is what we expect from the manager. He did it so I think, with things like this, you show by example.

“He knows exactly what he wants. He’s shown that determination and from the first day we’ve known exactly what we’ve had to do and where he wants to go. It’s all clear for the players and for the team and we have a good connection with the manager.”

The 30-year-old further commented on their hunt for more trophies in the coming season. The Red Devils put an end to their trophy drought by winning the Carabao Cup last season. They also finished runner-up to Manchester City in the FA Cup final.

Assuring the fans, the former Real Madrid defender said the team is getting better and he feels confident that they can win trophies in the coming years.

“We want to fight for every trophy. That’s the expectation for this club. We want to grow as a team, be more consistent and fight to be at the top. That’s what we want.

“We are improving the team, the squad, and that’s good for the challenge that we have in front of us.

“I feel more confident in this dressing room. In a good way, not arrogance, but confident to trust our qualities and to believe that we can achieve something.”

Varane spent a decade at Real Madrid and won over 15 trophies during his team with the Spanish giants. He is most likely to partner Lisandro Martinez in the heart of United’s defence.

With Maguire and Eric Bailly potentially leaving, United’s sole reliable backup is Victor Lindelöf. It remains to be seen whether United splurge in the summer on another defender or keep Maguire as a backup.