Manchester United News

How Ten hag and De Jong could react to Barcelona Europa League Pairing

A possible battle awaits football fans in February

By Angus Barnes

A possible battle awaits football fans in February
A possible battle awaits football fans in February
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If the last couple of results are to be considered, Manchester United will be rooting for their second and third wins against Barcelona FC in an already expectant fixture, which will help to close up the 5 wins that the latter has had against the record 20 time English champions, but that might actually not be the bane of the fixture, the talk could be between, a coach and his former protégé who refused his offer for a transfer.

Erik ten Hag will not only be looking at repeating Jose Mourinho's 2017 feat, the Dutch tactician with the record of being the fastest Ajax manager to reach a century wins (in 124 games)  will be looking to compound Frenkie de Jong's woes if the fixture comes to fruition, and the reason behind these thoughts is not far fetched.

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In mid July, it was reported that both Barcelona and Man United had agreed a deal in the region of €85 million for de Jong to move to Old Trafford, but the Dutch midfielder who's currently struggling for 1st team football under coach, Xavi Hernandez refused to leave the Spanish giants with The Athletic also reporting that de Jong as they were told, did not have a particularly special relationship with Ten Hag in his days at Ajax. 

One thing for sure is the market value of this game, even though both teams have not mathematically qualified or knocked out of their respective groups, Barca's only hope of qualification would be that Inter Milan lose both games and they win both, for United, a draw would see them through to the round of 16, as they continue in their quest for a major Title and a return to Champions League football. 


What are the chances of the fixture happening?

Though, it is almost certain that both teams will be in the draws of Europe's second tier football tournament  in February, the probability is slim, with 8 teams dropping from the UCL. Cristiano Ronaldo will be looking to score his 1st goal against Barcelona in a Manchester United jersey, having lost the 2008/09 final courtesy of a Samuel Eto'o strike and a Lionel Messi header. It will also be recalled that Paul Scholes' long range effort was the difference between both teams in 2007/08 semi final.




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