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Erik ten Hag rates Man Utd’s top-four chances after Brentford draw | Football



Erik ten Hag rates Man Utd's top-four chances after Brentford draw | Football

The Red Devils were minutes away from an astonishing smash-and-grab (Picture: Getty)

Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag is still not giving up hope of finishing in the top four this season despite slipping further behind Aston Villa and Tottenham.

Spurs came from behind to beat Luton Town before Villa saw off Wolves, putting them nine and 12 points ahead of United respectively before the Red Devils took on Brentford in Saturday’s evening kick-off.

Despite being second best throughout the contest and conceding an astonishing 31 shots, United thought they had pulled off one of the Premier League’s most astonishing smash-and-grabs when substitute Mason Mount struck in stoppage time only for Kristoffer Ajer to hit back immediately to secure a 1-1 draw.

United were rather fortuitous to escape with a point and Ten Hag feels it could prove to be a valuable result come the end of the season in the race for a Champions League berth.

Asked if he still feels United can nab a top-four finish, Ten Hag replied: ‘There are still many games to go.

‘But, of course, the points will be more expensive by the end and this should have been three [points].

‘But now it’s only one, by the end we will know how it will work out, but it could be a big point by the end.’

In addition to conceding 31 shots against Brentford – which takes their tally of shots against to 106 across their last four matches – United also allowed 85 touches in their own box.

Brentford FC v Manchester United - Premier League

Brentford more than merited a point against United (Picture: Getty)

Probed on whether it is a concern how many shots United are facing, Ten Hag replied: ‘As long as we get results, no.

‘I’ll explain it once more. We defended low at times, because Brentford are very direct, we lost many second balls, and then you have to defend the box and that is what we did quite well.

‘And we had a great goalkeeper, he was brilliant as well, so we have to say that.

‘I think our results are quite consistent from January on, but yeah we concede shots. But we don’t concede too many goals. And we’re creating chances – with Rasmus Hojlund big chances – and we scored a goal, and it’s all about bringing that over the line.’

Asked if a future title challenge can be sustained on such leaky performances against teams like Brentford, Ten Hag hit back: ‘Don’t lower the performances from Brentford, because I saw them against Man City and City were also lucky to win that game.

‘And I have seen them against Liverpool and in the first 35 minutes Brentford should have taken the lead. So don’t express this [opinion about Brentford].

‘We should have done this better, I’m not happy with the performance, there should be no misunderstanding [about that]. And the players are also disappointed by the performance.

‘We should be consistent in the way we take a game, and go into a game, and perform and show more aggressiveness especially.’

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