Erik ten Hag responds to Louis van Gaal’s ‘commercial club’ criticism of Manchester United

Ten Hag was unveiled as United’s new manager at Old Trafford on Monday

<p>Louis van Gaal was Manchester United manager from 2014 to 2016 (Martin Rickett/PA).</p>

Louis van Gaal was Manchester United manager from 2014 to 2016 (Martin Rickett/PA).

Erik ten Hag is convinced that Manchester United are not a 'commercial club', despite taking advice from Louis van Gaal before agreeing to take the manager's job.

Van Gaal advised his compatriot to "choose a football club and not a commercial club" when Ten Hag was close to being confirmed as the permanent successor to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The 70-year-old served two seasons as United manager before being dismissed in 2016 after failing to achieve a top-four finish and qualify for the Champions League.

While being unveiled in his new role at Old Trafford on Monday, Ten Hag confirmed that he spoke to Van Gaal at a film premiere for a documentary about the Netherlands head coach's life last month.

“I have heard [Van Gaal's comments], but I draw my own line. I’m convinced this will not be the case," he said.

"I spoke with the directors about it. Football is one, two and three at this club and every club these days is commercial.

"Every club needs it, needs the revenues to be at the top, to do it is necessary but football is one, two, three at this club."

Ten Hag also said that he expects to speak with outgoing interim manager Ralf Rangnick over the next few days as part of his fact-finding mission before the new season.

Rangnick is set to take up a two-year consultancy role with United though the extent to which he will be involved in decision-making is vague, with Ten Hag saying: "That is on the club."

On speaking with Rangnick, Ten Hag added: “It’s part of my analysis, I analyse by myself, I observe and I speak with a lot of people, but I will draw my own line.

“I'm still in the process of analysing to set conclusions, I'm looking forward to working with these players.

"The season before, this squad finished second in the league, so it has potential, so I think if we improve, if we can work with them, we can get more out of them than this season."

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