Former Liverpool defender, Jamie Carragher, has voiced his concerns over Manchester United's lack of identity and playing style under manager Erik ten Hag. Carragher highlighted the team's performance in the recent Manchester derby, where they were outclassed by City, losing 3-0 at Old Trafford.
Carragher commented on Sky Sports on Sunday, stating, "None of us here can explain what Manchester United try to do in terms of how they play... We still don't know what we're going to see with Manchester United. You tell me how they play with the ball."
Despite finishing third in ten Hag's first season in charge and winning a trophy, United currently finds themselves in eighth place in the Premier League, a significant distance behind league leaders Tottenham. Having lost five out of their ten league games this season, the team's lack of identity on the pitch is becoming more apparent.
While Carragher acknowledged the uncertainty surrounding the ownership takeover, he emphasized that the team's style of play cannot be solely blamed on the Glazers. He stated, "What he's doing on the training pitch Monday to Friday has got nothing to do with Jim Ratcliffe coming in... What does he want those players to do? When they are building from the back... what are Manchester United trying to do with the ball?"
Carragher further criticized United's approach, noting that they consistently play a counter-attacking style with a focus on long balls, which is uncommon among other top teams. He called it "underdog football" and questioned the training methods and tactics implemented by ten Hag.
The signings made under ten Hag's tenure have also come under scrutiny. Antony, the club's second-most expensive signing at £82 million, made little impact during a second-half cameo appearance. Mason Mount, a £60 million summer signing, has been benched in recent fixtures and failed to make an impact as a substitute.
Casemiro, who joined from Real Madrid for £60 million last summer, was absent in the Manchester derby but has struggled to maintain the form he demonstrated in his first season at Old Trafford. On the panel, Carragher described him as "one of the worst signings they have made."
Gary Neville, another former Manchester United player, highlighted the influence of ten Hag on the club's recruitment policy, stating that the manager has been allowed to dictate policy, which he believes is problematic.
With United's current struggles and lack of a discernible style of play, questions continue to mount concerning ten Hag's management and the direction of the club.