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'It's a joke!' – Ten Hag hits back at untrue squad overhaul reports

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has described reports most of his squad is up for sale as a “joke” and “untrue” as he claims he has “a base of his squad which is very good”.

Media reports this week claimed that the majority of United’s team is up for sale this summer, a list including forward Marcus Rashford, as Ten Hag’s side undergo a first summer transfer window under new investor Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his INEOS group.

Speaking ahead of United’s Monday Night Football game with Crystal Palace, Ten Hag hit back at the rumours, even though he admits squad improvements need to be made this summer.

Responding to the rumours, Ten Hag said: “It’s a joke! As long as I worked here, every summer, 200 players are getting an interest from Manchester United, which is untrue. We did some research.

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“Every summer, we sell every player in our squad. Which is untrue. Be calm and take responsibility when you take such a headline. It is totally c**p.”

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The Football Show’s Sam Blitz and Peter Smith take a closer look at the Manchester United squad and discuss who may be kept or sold this summer in a period of change at Old Trafford

Asked about what needs to be done this summer, the Dutchman responded: “Always a lot of work. It’s normal that when you go into a transfer window. Those injuries [United have had this season] had a big impact.

“We are still below the levels from the expectations that Manchester United has. So we have to catch up.

“I am now going into my fifth window, two windows were ok, two windows we missed. We have to make new improvements in the summer. There is a base of this squad that is very good. Injuries had a big impact on our season.”

Ten Hag on Sancho: He has a high value for Man Utd

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The Football Show’s Sam Blitz and Peter Smith discuss the options open to Manchester United this summer with the return to form for Jadon Sancho

Rumours also circulated about the future of Jadon Sancho, who impressed in Borussia Dortmund’s Champions League semi-final win against Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday night.

Sancho was frozen out by Ten Hag at the start of this season due to disciplinary reasons before rejoining former club Dortmund in the January transfer window.

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Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag praises Jadon Sancho after his recent performances on loan for Borussia Dortmund but won’t be drawn about his future at the club next season

In the 1-0 victory against PSG, Sancho won the player of the match award and nearly ended up with a hat-trick of assists, prompting many to question whether the England international will return after his loan expires this summer.

“Yesterday he played very good. He talked more about it, he is a very good player,” said Ten Hag of Sancho.

“He showed why Manchester United bought him,. He showed why he represents a high value for Manchester United. That’s good, I’m happy for Jadon for his performance yesterday. Let’s see what will happen in the future.”

‘Many players will still want to play for Man Utd’

Dortmund’s win over PSG means United cannot mathematically qualify for next season’s Champions League as the Premier League will not have a fifth spot in the competition next term.

United now have two opportunities to qualify for the Europa League – via a fifth or sixth-placed Premier League finish or by winning this month’s FA Cup final against Manchester City.

Ten Hag still believes United have a pulling power in the transfer market, despite not having Champions League football.

“It [missing out on Champions League football] will have an impact on the budget,” he said. “But I am sure Manchester United is a very attractive team to play for, many players will be very pleased and happy to play for Manchester United, I’m sure.”

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