It’s not been the greatest of seasons so far in 2023/24 for Man United, and the next week will be crucial for the Red Devils.
After playing Bournemouth at the weekend, Erik ten Hag’s side face Bayern Munich in a must-win Champions League group game.
If United lose that match they will be out of Europe entirely, and, with respect, in a group that includes Galatasaray and Copenhagen, that’s not good enough.
Things could get even worse when they head to Anfield on December 17, the scene of a 7-0 drubbing last time out.
Of course, were United to replicate their midweek performance against Chelsea and come out of the next eight days smelling of roses, the narrative changes entirely.
Certainly, ten Hag could do with some good news given that the media have been rounding on him of late, even going as far as to suggest that the Dutchman had lost as much as 50% of the dressing room.
One player that hasn’t really made an impact for him so far is Mason Mount, a £55m summer signing from Chelsea, however, the player is going nowhere.
‘One former Chelsea player who is having a difficult time at Manchester United is Mason Mount, and an injury has complicated his position in recent weeks. But guys, it’s important to say that in public Erik ten Hag confirmed again that he really wanted the player. That he trusted his analysis,’ Fabrizio Romano wrote in his exclusive Daily Briefing for CaughtOffside.
‘Of course there has been a difficult beginning to the season in general for Man United and for Mason Mount, but obviously he can still be an important player for the club and Erik ten Hag believes he is part of the future for Man United.
‘He’s happy with the behaviour of the player off the pitch, including trying to recover in the best and quickest way possible. Obviously the club are expecting different things in the next month, but they want to wait for him and don’t want more pressure from the media regarding his selection or form.’
Clearly, Mount will have to hit the ground running when he returns from his most recent injury, however, having his manager’s full support will be welcomed.
A decent run of form might even see him as a shoo-in for Gareth Southgate’s Euro 2024 England squad.