HomeManchester United boss Ten Hag unhappy with fixture congestion

Manchester United boss Ten Hag unhappy with fixture congestion

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Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag bemoaned the exertions placed on players after seeing defender Lisandro Martinez become the latest man to be struck down by injury.

Argentina defender Martinez is set for an extended spell on the sidelines after aggravating a foot problem against Arsenal earlier this month, joining Sergio Reguilon, Luke Shaw, Tyrell Malacia, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Kobbie Mainoo and Amad Diallo in the treatment room.

Ten Hag does have Scott McTominay and Christian Eriksen back for Saturday’s visit of Crystal Palace to Old Trafford but the Dutchman believes the congested fixture schedule is a key factor in the depletion of his squad.

He said: “We already expanded the squad. We had a World Cup in the middle of the season [last year]. We had to play a longer season as well, with the FA Cup and a shorter break.

“Every time the schedule is expanding, the load on the players is too much, it’s such a great overload. Many colleagues of mine have pointed to that and I have pointed to that as well. But it keeps going. We keep expanding the schedule.

“It won’t stop. Players can’t deal any more with this overload and I think that’s what you see in this squad at the moment.”

Palace will be making their second trip to Old Trafford in four days after going down 3-0 in Tuesday’s EFL Cup tie but Ten Hag knows both teams will be radically different after both he and Roy Hodgson made a raft of changes in midweek.

“Both sides will be different but we got belief from it [Tuesday’s win],” he added.

“I know the opponent is looking for revenge, and that will be their view.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

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