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Tottenham decided against appointing Erik ten Hag as manager for two reasons before his move to Man Utd

Tottenham decided against appointing Erik ten Hag as manager for two reasons before his move to Man Utd

Erik ten Hag was interviewed by Spurs in the summer of 2021.

Tottenham Hotspur decided against appointing Erik ten Hag as their replacement for Jose Mourinho, a year before he took the job at Manchester United.

The North London club held talks with then-Ajax manager Ten Hag in the summer of 2021 but he failed to convince the Spurs hierarchy in an underwhelming interview.

They instead decided to hire Nuno Espirito Santo, who was sacked by the Premier League side after only four months in charge.

So why did they opt against Ten Hag? According to the Daily Mail, he was 'too bland' in his interview and made a demand that puzzled the board.

He was reportedly insistent on bringing just one coach with him, Sjors Ultee, rather than an entire backroom staff, which is also said to have raised eyebrows amongst chiefs.

And as pointed out in a recent report from The Athletic, senior executives at Spurs had concerns over 'Ten Hag’s command of English and ability to communicate ideas'.

A year later and the Dutchman was appointed as Manchester United manager after he impressed directors John Murtough and Darren Fletcher with his philosophy and vision for the club.

United were said to be positive with talks and offered Ten Hag a three-year deal.

“During the past four years at Ajax, Erik has proved himself to be one of the most exciting and successful coaches in Europe, renowned for his team’s attractive, attacking football and commitment to youth," Murtough said when the news was announced.

“In our conversations with Erik leading up to this appointment, we were deeply impressed with his long-term vision for returning Manchester United to the level we want to be competing at, and his drive and determination to achieve that."

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

After concerns were raised about Ten Hag's communication in that Spurs interview, he later played down suggestions he was taking English lessons after being linked with the job in March 2022.

But his commitment to being fluent in the language was clear in the opening weeks of his reign and beyond.

Featured Image Credit: Getty Images

Topics: Erik Ten Hag, Tottenham Hotspur, Premier League, Manchester United