Ten Hag admits €95m Man Utd flop Antony needs to buck up his ideas

Tom Weber
Tom Weber
  • Updated: 24 Feb 2024 16:09 GMT
  • 3 min read
Erik ten Hag, Antony, Man Utd

Erik ten Hag has admitted that Antony is underperforming at Manchester United.

The Brazilian is in the midst of a dire season. Still without a goal contribution in Premier League play this term, Antony has now fully lost his place as a starter in Ten Hag's side.

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With Alejandro Garnacho comprehensively outperforming the 23-year-old, the Dutch boss appeared to have found his first-choice attack prior to Rasmus Hojlund's unfortunate injury, with the Dane up top, Garnacho on the right and Marcus Rashford on the left.

However, in light of Hojlund being sidelined for several weeks, a window of opportunity for Antony appeared to have opened up. Left without a recognised senior number nine, Ten Hag has had to move Rashford centrally and Garnacho to the left, yet he did not pick Antony for the game against Fulham.

Illustrative of how far the once seemingly undroppable Brazilian has fallen down the pecking order, 19-year-old Omari Forson was given the nod ahead of him against the Cottagers, with more than just impressive training performances influencing Ten Hag's thinking.

Erik ten Hag and Antony
© IMAGO - Erik ten Hag and Antony

Antony needs to improve

Ahead of the game, Ten Hag spoke about his former Ajax protégé, whom he was desperate to sign in 2022, leading to Man Utd shelling out an utterly absurd €95 million.

The Dutchman was quick to jump to Antony's defence, but could not help but admit that he needs to buck up his ideas and improve his performances. "He has to prove a point, that he will do," Ten Hag said.

"And he has big potential. He hasn't shown it lately, but I know what his talent is, and it's about proving his talent, and it's about him. And, yeah, he will probably get his opportunities, right? But, yeah, I think that was always the idea."

"You have competition, and now he has to show himself on the training pitch, but also others because we have opportunities there. With [Amad] Diallo returning from an injury, he's doing well in the training. Omari Forson is doing well. So we have options to fill in those positions."

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