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Christian Eriksen's Manchester United running statistics are proving everybody wrong under Erik ten Hag

Dylan Penketh

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Christian Eriksen's Manchester United running statistics are proving everybody wrong under Erik ten Hag

Manchester United signed Christian Eriksen as a free agent after his short-term contract at Brentford expired at the end of this June.

One of six signings to join the club this summer under Erik ten Hag, Christian Eriksen had a whole host of European and Premier League offers to choose from before eventually settling on Manchester United.

His footballing journey over the last few season has been an inspiration to many.

After suffering from a cardiac arrest at Euro 2020 last summer, the Dane had to leave his club at the time, Inter Milan, due to national rules barring anyone who has ever suffered heart problems from being a professional athlete in Italy.

After training with Jong Ajax and his hometown club, he eventually signed a 6-month contract with Brentford in January 2022, where he then performed brilliantly in order to take Brentford to an incredibly respectful 13th placed finish in their maiden Premier League season.

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While everyone already knew of his obvious quality from his time at Tottenham, his performances while at the Bees instilled a lot of confidence in many clubs that he had not lost any ability post-heart operation, and those clubs who did not want to take the risk back in January 2022 now wanted to jump at the opportunity of Eriksen.

With Ten Hag securing the Dane's signing, many speculated as to how he would fit into the squad.

Manchester United already had Bruno Fernandes as an established No.10 - the position that Eriksen most famously plays.

The first five Premier League fixtures of the season however have revealed the Dutch manager's plan for Eriksen, in which the player has played a much deeper role.

Eriksen's 2022/23 season heat map (below) shows that the playmaker has been instructed to sit behind the front four instead of become part of it, creating chances and opening up play from a deeper position.

Christian Eriksen. (Alamy)
Christian Eriksen. (Alamy)

Now, with this instruction also often comes a lot of running; and with Eriksen's obvious heart problem and current age, many speculated whether he would be able to exceed in this role.

With the Premier League becoming an ever increasing physical and demanding competition, it was widely thought that Eriksen just wouldn't have the legs to be able to compete alongside the rest.

However, it has now been revealed that Eriksen isn't just competing with the rest, he is outrunning every single other player in the United team.

Eriksen has, on average, run more than all the other Manchester United players so far this season.

Despite United arguably overpaying for multiple signings this summer, Eriksen coming into the club on a free contract is certainly turning out to be an incredible bargain for the club, with Erik ten Hag trusting the player's ability to start over the likes of Fred.

Despite this, with Casemiro coming into the fold and United playing Arsenal on Sunday, there is a chance that Eriksen will be rested for the fixture, as although this stat is incredibly impressive, his minutes do need to be managed.

United are looking to climb into the top four for the first time this season as they take on Mikel Arteta's men who, as of the start of game week 6, sit top of the Premier League table.

Featured Image Credit: Man Utd

Topics: Manchester United, Christian Eriksen, Erik Ten Hag

Dylan Penketh
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