Erik ten Hag claims Alphonso Davies ‘is not a great defender’ ahead of Manchester United’s Champions League opener against Bayern Munich.
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United begin their Champions League campaign with their toughest game in Group A as they face Bayern at the Allianz Arena.
Ten Hag has made just one change from the starting side which lost 3-1 to Brighton on Saturday as Facundo Pellistri replaces Scott McTominay.
And speaking ahead of the game, Ten Hag boldly claimed that Pellistri could expose Davies’ defensive weakness.
When asked about his decision to hand Pellistri his first start of the season, Ten Hag told TNT Sports: ‘Pelli is doing very well over a longer period.
‘He came from South America, to start against Brighton with three coming from South America, it’s a tough journey.
‘I think also it’s not fair not to give him a chance.
‘Today, also I think tactically it fits very good because they have Davies who is very offensive, he has a lot of speed, Pelle can match that.
‘He can match the defending but also offensively he has the capabilities to also go and attack, Davies is not a great defender, with his dribbling… I think it’s a good game for him.’
Ten Hag also dismissed suggestions that the negativity currently directed at United is having an impact on the players.
‘Adversity is always there, it’s always in Man United, over decades it’s always been there,’ Ten Hag said.
‘As a group you have to deal with adversity, you have to get energy from it, you have to get strong, it’s only possible when you are together.
‘Keep unified and battle, you have to co-operate as a team, if not then you are vulnerable. We have to protect ourselves, focus on the process, focus on playing better.’
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