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Man Utd manager targets ranked from best to worst as five-man shortlist emerges to replace Erik ten Hag

Man Utd manager targets ranked from best to worst as five-man shortlist emerges to replace Erik ten Hag

The shortlist features Thomas Tuchel, Kieran McKenna and Thomas Frank.

On the eve of this weekend's FA Cup final, reports have emerged that suggest Erik ten Hag will be sacked as Manchester United manager, regardless of the outcome at Wembley.

It has been a turbulent season for Ten Hag and his players. After an inconsistent run in the Premier League they finished eighth behind Newcastle, Chelsea, Tottenham and Aston Villa.

The club also hit rock bottom in Europe, finishing bottom of their Champions League group with four points from a possible 18. In fact, it was United's worst ever campaign in Europe's elite competition.

Now, it appears the writing is on the wall for Ten Hag. A report from The Guardian suggests an FA Cup win over Manchester City on Saturday would not save the Dutchman from being sacked.

So who will Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his team decide to appoint if Ten Hag is dismissed?

United have identified Mauricio Pochettino, Thomas Tuchel, Graham Potter, Thomas Frank and Kieran McKenna as potential replacements for Ten Hag, according to the above report.

England manager Gareth Southgate has also been linked in recent weeks but we're going to rank the above five names from best to worst based on their pedigree and suitability to the role.

Graham Potter - 5th

For some time Graham Potter was regarded as one of the brightest managers in the country following a successful spell at Brighton, but a tricky reign at Chelsea has somewhat dented that reputation.

The 49-year-old, who recently turned down a move to Ajax, has a huge admirer in Sir Jim Ratcliffe and United’s new sporting director Dan Ashworth, who reportedly held 'secret talks' with Potter earlier this season.

Question marks will be raised as to whether he can handle the egos in that United dressing room. Is he a big enough personality to handle that kind of pressure? We're not so sure.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

Thomas Frank - 4th

Thomas Frank is a 'strong contender' for the United job should they sack Ten Hag after this weekend's FA Cup final, according to The Telegraph.

The Dane has a relationship with INEOS' head of sport Sir Dave Brailsford, who is in charge of all football operations at Old Trafford, so that foundation would be crucial if he was to makes the huge jump from Brentford to United.

But like the previously mentioned Potter, questions over Frank's pedigree will naturally crop up. He is yet to be tested among the elite but has shown real potential at Brentford. A risky one.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

Kieran McKenna - 3rd

Manchester United officials have already met with representatives of Ipswich Town manager Kieran McKenna, according to Sky Sports, but they face stiff competition from Chelsea as they seek to replace Mauricio Pochettino.

McKenna's representatives spoke to United's chief executive Omar Berrada and technical director Jason Wilcox over the prospect of him taking over first-team duties.

Ipswich securing back-to-back promotions under the 38-year-old should impress any United fan, and his previous experience at Old Trafford under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer gives him an edge over other candidates.

Another young-ish candidate but his possession-heavy system will be welcomed.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

Thomas Tuchel - 2nd

Tuchel is the most likely candidate to replace Erik ten Hag should he leave United this summer, according to The Guardian.

The 50-year-old, who parted ways with Bayern Munich at the end of the season, has impressed those behind the scenes at United with his temperament and CV. He is also an 'accomplished tactician' with experience of working at major clubs.

Unlike some of the above, Tuchel has proved that he has the temperament to handle big characters in the dressing room; something that is absolutely necessary at Old Trafford.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty

Mauricio Pochettino - 1st

People may argue that his stock has fallen following a far-from-perfect spell at Chelsea but others will agree that Pochettino's tenure at Stamford Bridge was cut short too early following a positive end to the campaign.

It was a tough choice between Tuchel and Pochettino but the latter's outstanding man-management skills are exactly what some players at United need amid so much change.

He also has a wealth of experience in England's top flight, over-achieving with Spurs as they reached a Champions League final in 2019. The right man for the job? We think so.

Image credit: Getty
Image credit: Getty
Featured Image Credit: Getty Images

Topics: Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag, Premier League, Graham Potter, Mauricio Pochettino, Thomas Tuchel