Sceptics question ten Hag’s resolve

Man United boss ten Hag faces tough test. — Reuters

MANCHESTER United will have been buoyed by their come-from-behind win over Aston Villa in midweek.

The sceptics will question whether they can build on it and turn their fortunes around in the second half of the season.

Man United’s rivals will poke fun at that result and boldly predict that the Red Devils will suffer more indignation and see Erik ten Hag shown the exit before the season is up.

Notwithstanding all this, ten Hag has a good opportunity to use the Villa result to galvanise his ailing squad as they come against Nottingham Forest, a supposedly “small club”, who themselves have been lifted by victory in midweek.

Forest won by some measure when they brushed aside Newcastle at St James Park, triumphing 3-1 in their first win on the road this season.

Man United’s 3-2 win against Villa at Old Trafford was marked by a couple of telling moments.

One was Danish striker Rasmus Hojlund, who was signed in the offseason for £72mil, registering his first-ever goal for Manchester United.

The other was ten Hag and the players booed off at the break.

But that was before they rallied to snatch the points and end a run of goalless football lasting more than four and a half hours.

This side had not scored in four consecutive games before Villa buckled under pressure.

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