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Newcastle logo
Premier League | Gameweek 14
Dec 2, 2023 at 8pm UK
St. James' Park
Manchester United logo
1 - 0
Man Utd
Gordon (55')
Joelinton (90+7')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Maguire (77'), Antony (90+2')

Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag plays down Anthony Martial row

Man United boss Erik ten Hag plays down Anthony Martial row
© Reuters
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag plays down his row with Anthony Martial during Saturday's Premier League clash with Newcastle United.

Manchester United head coach Erik ten Hag has played down his row with Anthony Martial during Saturday's Premier League clash with Newcastle United at St James' Park.

Martial was a surprise starter against Eddie Howe's side, and he found it difficult to make his mark in the Premier League affair, eventually being withdrawn in the 61st minute, shortly after Newcastle had scored the only goal of the match through Anthony Gordon.

Ten Hag was involved in a shouting match with the Frenchman during the first half of the clash with the Magpies, and the Man United head coach admitted that he became "aggressive" with the forward but insisted that his frustration was directed towards the team due to their struggles.

"It's not about Anthony Martial; it's about the team. I try to energise the team and try to get a reaction from the team in this moment. As you see, we had a tough period and when you're coaching, you are a little more aggressive, so that's normal," Ten Hag told reporters after his side's 1-0 loss.

Martial was substituted alongside Marcus Rashford, who also struggled, with Rasmus Hojlund and Antony being introduced for the 20-time English champions.

Newcastle United's Anthony Gordon scores their first goal  on December 2, 2023© Reuters

"Well, so we had a tough first half. We said at half-time: 'OK, we are pleased it is 0-0, we have to stay in the game.' We didn't, but we had a good comeback in the last part of the game, so that is the fight we have to show," Ten Hag added after the clash with Newcastle.

"We have to give credit to Newcastle. They played better than us tonight. We started well, we had a good chance by [Alejandro] Garnacho but then, for a long period, Newcastle had the better performance than us.

"We went down 1-0 but, to be fair, by the end of the game, we came back and had some good opportunities. [Sergio] Reguilon had a good chance, then [there was] the offside goal, so we fought back but we have to do this for the whole game.

"You could say we defended quite well but I prefer to stay further away from our goal and I prefer to have more of the ball, to play in their half. We had our moments where we could make good formations but it wasn't enough. We could have been more dominant in the game."

Manchester United head coach Erik ten Hag on November 1, 2023© Reuters

Ten Hag said that he was pleased with the impact of the substitutes at St James' Park, with Sofyan Amrabat and Sergio Reguilon also being introduced late on.

"I think they put out a good team. It's probably one of the strongest teams they have, but, in the end, they didn't have the subs we have. We brought some energy in and that had a good effect on the game," he added.

"This week, it was not in our advantage but you have to take it as it is. We have to put this right. I know we are resilient. We can do that. Several weeks ago, we lost to [Manchester] City and then we had a good run [in the Premier League], so we have to get back to a good run."

Man United will be bidding to bounce back from the defeat when they welcome Chelsea to Old Trafford in the Premier League on Wednesday night.

Bournemouth will then head to Manchester in the league next weekend, before Bayern Munich visit the famous stadium in the Champions League on December 12.

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