Ten Hag criticizes Man United’s injuries after home loss against Arsenal

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag blamed an injury crisis at the Old Trafford club for a poor season after his side lost 1-0 to Arsenal in the Premier League on Sunday – their ninth home defeat in all competitions this season.

United, who have now equaled the number of defeats at home in a season, had at least six defenders out due to injury, as well as playmaker Bruno Fernandes and forward Marcus Rashford.

Ten Hag, who has been forced to play defensive midfielder Casemiro at centre-back in recent games, has now seen his side concede 82 goals in all competitions this season – the most in a single season since 1970-71.

“I don’t know where we would be if we had all the players on board, but it is certainly true that if all the players are on board, you get more points,” says Ten Hag on the club’s website.

“You will definitely have more consistency, especially in the back line, because yes, now we are conceding a lot of chances and goals and last year we had the most clean sheets in the Premier League.

“You can’t move a team forward if, especially in certain key areas, it’s like swimming with your hands behind your back, you have to keep your head above the water level, this is what we’re trying to do.

“We are still in a cup final, this is good, but if you want to progress as a team we need fit players. You saw today with our opponent that only one player for (Arsenal) was not available. We had so many.”

United are eighth in the league with 54 points. Their remaining league fixtures include a home game against sixth-placed Newcastle United on Wednesday, followed by a trip to Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday.

On May 25, they face Manchester City in the FA Cup final at Wembley.

However, Ten Hag said his side performed much better against Arsenal – who topped the table after the match – after suffering a 4-0 defeat at Crystal Palace last week.

“I can only be happy. And I think it’s a compliment to this team that those who played, they executed with everything they could, were competitive and fought. And then you see that you can achieve results,” says Ten Hag.