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3 ways Erik ten Hag can line up his Manchester United front three with Antony signing

Cain Smith

| Last updated 

3 ways Erik ten Hag can line up his Manchester United front three with Antony signing

Manchester United are on the verge of signing Ajax winger Antony following months of negotiations with the Eredivisie club and he will offer some much needed quality to the front line at Old Trafford.

The Brazilian was so keen to make the move happen that he exclusively spoke to Fabrizio Romano about his desire to leave his current club.

With the deal set to be a hefty one, he is likely to play a key role for Ten Hag going forward.

But, more importantly, his signing offers more options in the front three, with a true right-winger being absent for far too long at Old Trafford.

Here are three different ways Ten Hag could line up his United front line following the signing of Antony.

Note: With Cristiano Ronaldo's future still in the air, we have not included him, but know that he'd be at the forefront of these conversations should he remain at the Theatre of Dreams.

#1 - Sancho, Martial, Antony

This is probably the front three that everyone wants to see at Old Trafford.

Jadon Sancho and Anthony Martial were standouts during United's pre-season tour. Whilst the former played on the right, he is more than comfortable on the left side and some would argue he's even better there.

Antony would offer better balance, allowing Sancho to create from the left while he offers threat coming inside from the right flank.


With all three players comfortable in combinations, it would be an exciting front line to see whilst in possession, with rotations and quick football expected.

Although, an important facet would likely be the role of the number 10 behind them. There needs to be an extra runner off the backline in this instance.

Bruno Fernandes can certainly do this job, but he would need to avoid dropping deeper to try and influence play. He is a good runner, but would need to largely stick to that role.

Donny van de Beek could also be an option if his Portuguese counterpart is unable to shake his tendencies.

#2 Sancho, Rashford, Antony

With Martial already experiencing two injuries this campaign, it is beginning to seem unlikely that he's available for the majority of fixtures. This could be a more regular set-up seen.

Rashford is not a traditional number nine and we'd likely see rotation in the frontline with this personnel (as we would in the previous option).

Marcus Rashford scores against Liverpool. (Man Utd)
Marcus Rashford scores against Liverpool. (Man Utd)

This would need United's no.10 to act as a runner, with the creative wide men providing the supplies as they are joined in attack by their respective full-backs.

Whether there are enough goals in this line-up remains to be seen, but it seems like one that Ten Hag will certainly use often.

#3 - Rashford, Martial, Sancho

Importantly, despite Antony being a huge signing for United, he will also take time to adapt and adjust to the intensity of the Premier League.

It seems wrong to not include the marquee signing in all three options, but there will be times throughout the season where he will be better off as an option from the bench, unless he has an extraordinary start to life in England.

A front three of Rashford, Martial and Sancho can work well and being able to have the dangerous option of the Brazilian coming off the bench will always be positive.

Ten Hag worked with Antony at Ajax. Image: Alamy
Ten Hag worked with Antony at Ajax. Image: Alamy

United's forward depth is not good and this move would go a way to improving that. Antony is superbly talented, but do not be surprised if you see this set-up at times throughout the season.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester United, Transfers, Manchester United Transfer News & Rumours, Ajax, Antony, Erik Ten Hag, Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial

Cain Smith
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