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‘He has to play’: Erik ten Hag confirms Man Utd midfielder could leave in January

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has confirmed that midfielder Donny van de Beek could leave the club in January amid his lack of playing time.

The Netherlands international suffered a knee injury at the beginning of 2023 which ruled him out for the remainder of the 2022/23 campaign for United.

He managed to recover in time for pre-season, but the former Ajax man has played less than 30 minutes of first-team football in the ongoing campaign.

Van de Beek recently admitted that it could be time to move on from United, and Ten Hag has opened the door for his exit with his recent comments.

Speaking in yesterday’s press conference, the manager acknowledged that Van de Beek has to play and could leave to focus on his career elsewhere.

He told “I think Donny has to play. In games he was in the squad, so then he had the opportunity, but it was a slow start in the season because he still recovered from physical setbacks.”

“But now he is back and is doing well in the training so, if we can’t give him perspective, I can see that he has to play, for his career, for everything.”

Van de Beek should have left the club earlier

The Dutchman joined the Red Devils for £35 million more than three years ago and there was plenty of hype around him after his successful spell with Ajax.

However, he has simply failed to adapt to the demands of the Premier League. He has lacked the intensity to fit into United’s plans. He also struggled on loan at Everton.

A tally of two goals and two assists from 62 appearances is a very poor record, considering his previous achievements. In our view, he should have left the club last summer.

The writing has been on the wall for some time and it seems even Ten Hag agrees that he should consider a new challenge when the transfer window reopens this winter.

United will have to cut their losses on the 2019 Champions League semi-finalist. We won’t be surprised if Van de Beek is tempted to return to the Eredivisie, possibly with Ajax.

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