Erik ten Hag’s 3 Tactical Genius Against Barcelona Last Night
At Camp Nou, Manchester United and Barcelona split the victory in a match that was extremely exciting.
Once more, Marcus Rashford was outstanding, assisting Jules Kounde in scoring his own goal and scoring one himself. However, Raphinha and Marcos Alonso, both former Premier League players, were able to cancel out the goals.
Even though they lost, United put in a great effort, which was even more impressive when you consider that they were playing one of the best teams in Europe, who have only conceded seven goals in the league all year.
1. Weghorst in the midfield
Wout Weghorst’s arrival at United last month has shocked a lot of people, but no one could have anticipated the way he performed in the middle of the field at Camp Nou.
The massive Dutchman was the temporary No. 10 and played physical defense when United didn’t have the ball, which was much needed. He rushed up to join Rashford in the attack when they gained possession of the ball.
While Weghorst lacked the technical prowess of his midfield rivals Frenkie de Jong, Pedri, and Gavi, he appeared to be a natural in that position, which made Ten Hag’s decision to start him there appear brilliant.
2. Faith in Wan-Bissaka
Ten Hag has consistently shown faith in Wan-Bissaka ever since his arrival at Old Trafford: bringing out the best in stars who had been struggling.
Rashford is at his best, Jadon Sancho appears rejuvenated, Diogo Dalot has emerged as a first-team standout, and Aaron Wan-Bissaka appears poised to follow in his footsteps.
The Englishman was a rock at right back, effectively neutralizing Gavi’s and Jordi Alba’s overlapped threats. Ten Hag had good reasons to believe in Wan-Bissaka, despite the fact that Dalot would have been the obvious choice tonight.
3. Playing shaw at center-back
Ten Hag’s decision to use Luke Shaw at center back was not particularly surprising given that Shaw has been switching between left back and center back for the past few weeks.
It would have been simple to pair Raphael Varane with a central defender who was more “natural” given Robert Lewandowski’s physical danger.
Ten Hag still had Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof as backup options despite Lisandro Martinez’s suspension, but he decided to sit them out. This was the right choice based on how quiet Lewandowski was.
Additionally, we believe he misjudged one thing.