Graeme Souness has given a damning assessment of ’s squad, saying nothing has changed despite ’s spending spree.
After a great first season under Ten Hag, United were expected to only get better in 2023/24 especially after a summer where they spent over £164million so far.
But they have been poor in their opening two games, scraping a 1-0 win at home against an unfancied Wolves side before losing 2-0 at .
They’ll be hoping for much, much better on Saturday when they host , but Souness believes many of their players simply aren’t up to the task, highlighting several of their attacking options.
‘On the wings, you look at Jadon Sancho, Antony and Alejandro Garnacho,’ the Liverpool legend wrote in his column for the .
‘I don’t think any of them are good enough to be United players long-term and take the club where they want to go as a giant of world football. They’re ordinary.’
Souness also noted three of Ten Hag’s signings that he knew from his time at Ajax – namely Antony, Lisandro Martinez and Andre Onana – and says the trio must deliver for their manager’s sake.
Martinez has for the most part impressed since arriving at Old Trafford, but Antony has underwhelmed, returning just four goals and two assists in 27 Premier League appearances since his £82m move.
As for Onana, the £47m goalkeeper has endured a shaky start to life in England and was extremely fortunate to have not given away a last-minute penalty on his debut against Wolves.
‘In terms of recruitment, Ten Hag been heavily reliant on players he knows. They all have now got to turn up for him,’ Souness added.
‘It’s a quantum leap playing for Ajax in the Eredivisie then coming to the biggest club in England and playing a cup final every weekend – and that’s what he’s asked these guys to do.
‘I’m not sure if any of them are up to the standard needed to make Manchester United the best team in this country again.
The obsession now is to have a keeper who’s very good with the ball at his feet. He [Onana] looks to be that, but it’s never been tougher to be a keeper than it is in today’s game and I expect him to make mistakes.
Decision-making for goalkeepers used to be quite simple: do I come for a cross, do I punch the cross, do I come out for a through ball on the edge of my box?
Now they’re being asked to make those decisions and also pick the right pass to one of their team-mates, a lot of the time inside their own box. So the scope for error is now enormous.
‘Onana is certainly better than David de Gea with the ball. But will he win them as many points as De Gea did?
‘The Spaniard regularly made unorthodox stops with his legs and feet. We’ll have to wait and see if Onana can keep the ball out of the net like he did, but I doubt it.’
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