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Erik ten Hag told he is ‘playing with fire’ after making Man Utd coaching decision that will only increase pressure

ERIK TEN HAG has been warned he is “playing by fire” by appointing two fellow Dutchmen as his new assistant coaches.

The Manchester United manager has been given a huge show of faith by Sir Jim Ratcliffe after penning a new two-year contract.

Ten Hag is now set to be backed in the transfer market after leading United to two trophies in as many years, with Holland internationals Matthijs de Ligt and Joshua Zirkzee both closing in on Old Trafford switches.

But Ten Hag is also relying on compatriots when it comes to off-pitch matters.

The former Ajax gaffer is set to appoint not one but two new assistants.

And like himself, and United’s two incoming transfers, they also hail from the land of clogs and tulips.

Red Devils icon Ruud van Nistelrooy will make a stunning return to the Theatre of Dreams, nearly 20 years after departing as a player with 150 goals and a Premier League title.

Rene Hake has also turned his back on his managerial career to take up a joint No2 role under Ten Hag.

And United’s coaching staff will have a very ‘Oranje’ feel as the manager surrounds himself with fellow countrymen.

However, Dutch footballer-turned-journalist Johannes Derksen has told Ten Hag he is taking a big risk bringing in so many assistants from his own country.

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Derksen reckons the presence of more figures from Holland only increases the pressure on Ten Hag to deliver success.

And it also doesn’t mean that there will be an automatic bond with De Ligt or Zirkzee either, with Derksen pointing out the clashes between former manager Louis van Gaal and his star signing Memphis Depay.


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Carl Recine

Things did not work out between Louis van Gaal and Memphis Depay at United[/caption]

He told Vandaag Inside Oranje, via Voetbal: “He (Ten Hag) is playing with fire.

“They’ve done that at Barcelona before, you only survive if you become champion and win the European Cup.

“Van Gaal was dismissed at the time by Memphis. He fought hard for his arrival.

“He was supposed to be the greatest talent at the time. Memphis didn’t play a single good match there. Then you immediately lose your status.

“I understand it all. The English staff apparently doesn’t appeal to him, that’s why he wants all Dutch people.

“Hake doesn’t make you a champion. (Van Nistelrooy) really is a star there. He will be the first assistant, he must have forced that.”

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