Mino Raiola dead aged 54
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Incoming Manchester United head coach Erik ten Hag has paid tribute to super-agent Mino Raiola, who died on Saturday aged 54. Raiola, whose clientele included Erling Haaland, Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, was an influential figure in football and brokered some of the world’s biggest transfers.
Raiola died at the weekend following a long-term illness and tributes from across football have continued to pour in. Ten Hag was asked about the Portuguese’s passing following his Ajax side’s 3-0 Eredivisie win over PEC Zwolle.
The Dutchman alluded to the impact Raiola had on players around the world, telling journalists: “He was one of the most impressive agents and also very influential on the international player market.
“He has meant a lot to football, especially to the players he represented. He did that in an excellent way. Mino has been at the basis of the development of many players.”
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Raiola’s clients also included Ajax stars Ryan Gravenberch, Nousaair Mazraoui and Bryan Brobbey. Ten Hag noticed that the news had affected some of his players but was keen to focus on their important game amid the Eredivisie title race.
He continued: “I saw that it moved the players. But because it was so close to the game, I didn’t do anything with it right away.”
Ten Hag is seeing out the season at Ajax before he completes his move to Man Utd in the summer. The 52-year-old will arrive at Old Trafford as Ralf Rangnick steps aside from his interim role.
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Rangnick is moving into a consultancy position within the club’s complex structure, while also taking on the Austrian national team head coach’s job. It is understood that neither role will interfere with each other.
Ajax lead the Eredivisie with five matches remaining. According to ESPN, Ten Hag has told United he must not be disturbed as he hunts a third league title with the Dutch side.
Upon his appointment by United last month, ten Hag said: “It is a great honour to be appointed manager of Manchester United and I am hugely excited by the challenge ahead. I know the history of this great club and the passion of the fans, and I am absolutely determined to develop a team capable of delivering the success they deserve.
“It will be difficult to leave Ajax after these incredible years, and I can assure our fans of my complete commitment and focus on bringing this season to a successful conclusion before I move to Manchester United.”
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