Ten Hag expects stronger mentality from Man Utd after Sevilla horror show

Boss Erik ten Hag expects a response from Manchester United when they attempt to secure a place in the FA Cup final on Sunday.

Erik ten Hag expects his Manchester United players to show a stronger mentality and “earn the right to wear the shirt” after they crashed out of the Europa League with a whimper at Sevilla.

It was a horror show for the Red Devils in the second leg at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on Thursday as they were consigned to a 3-0 second-leg defeat, losing the quarter-final 5-2 on aggregate.

United shot themselves in the foot, Harry Maguire robbed for the first goal after taking a pass from David de Gea to gift Youssef En-Nesyri an early opener.

En-Nesyri later capitalised on terrible mistake from De Gea to complete the scoring after more poor defending gave Loic Bade the opportunity to score Sevilla’s second goal.

United were abysmal with so much at stake and boss Ten Hag, who was appointed as boss a year ago on Friday, warned they must raise their standards ahead of an FA Cup semi-final against Brighton and Hove Albion at Wembley on Sunday.

Ten Hag said: “We can’t deny it, it’s mental, definitely, we have to learn that you keep going, you carry on.

“This team what they can do very well is bounce back in between games, what they can do less is bounce back during a game to a setback. That is what we have to improve.”

He added: “You have to acknowledge, it’s the truth, we have to do better, I know that.

“I have to reach the players to do better in such circumstances, we deal better with such expectations, the demands on this team, we are Manchester United, they are high, we have to improve it, I have to reach the players and they have to step up.”

Ten Hag says United remain a work in progress as they prepare for another huge cup tie.

He said: “I think we are always playing for our future as professional players. Every game is a test, every season is a test, you have to earn the right to wear the shirt.

“It’s for me as a manager. We are in the same boat. During the season we have made huge progress. We have the experience, but we have a way to go.

“A good thing is Sunday is a huge opportunity, semi-final of the FA Cup, a better event you can’t imagine, after that a lot of great games to go, we have to prove it and this group of players has to prove it.”

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