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Manchester United 'add name to shortlist of Erik ten Hag replacements'

Man Utd 'add name to shortlist of Ten Hag replacements'
© Reuters
Former Brighton & Hove Albion boss Roberto De Zerbi reportedly emerges as a surprise candidate to succeed Erik ten Hag at Manchester United next season.

Former Brighton & Hove Albion boss Roberto De Zerbi has unexpectedly emerged as a candidate to succeed Erik ten Hag at Manchester United, according to report.

The 44-year-old Italian departed the American Express Stadium after the conclusion of the 2023-24 Premier League season and has also been strongly linked with a move to Chelsea.

The Blues opted to part ways with Mauricio Pochettino last week, with Leicester City's Enzo Maresca and Brentford's Thomas Frank believed to be in the running for the managerial job at Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, despite guiding the Red Devils to FA Cup glory last Saturday, Ten Hag's future remains uncertain due to a disappointing domestic campaign which saw his side finish in eighth place and eight points behind the top four.

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag applauds the fans after the match on May 15, 2024© Reuters

Man Utd consider De Zerbi as Ten Hag successor?

As per the Daily Mail, Manchester United engaged in discussions with De Zerbi's representatives last week as part of their contingency planning.

The report adds that the club also held discussions with their former assistant coach Kieran McKenna, who is now managing Ipswich Town, Thomas Frank and former Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel.

United are set to conduct an extensive review of the season this week to decide whether Ten Hag will be allowed to fulfil the final year of his three-year contract at Old Trafford.

Despite this, the Dutchman remains confident that he has earned the right to continue at United, citing his track record of winning trophies in each of his two seasons at the club.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Roberto De Zerbi celebrates after the match on September 16, 2023© Reuters

Several European giants keeping an eye on former Brighton boss

De Zerbi departed from Brighton earlier this month after steering the Seagulls to an 11th-place finish in the English top flight.

It is understood that the 44-year-old Italian had disagreements with Brighton owner Tony Bloom over several signings last season and wants substantial involvement in assembling his squad, which could prove to be a problem for both Chelsea and Man United, who have already put extensive recruitment teams in place ahead of the 2024-25 season.

Still, despite only winning one of their final 10 games of the 2023-24 Premier League season, the former Brighton boss remains highly regarded by several big sides across Europe following an impressive debut campaign at the Amex Stadium.

Napoli, AC Milan and Bayern Munich have all been mentioned as possible destinations for De Zerbi, though Antonio Conte, Paulo Fonseca and Vincent Kompany are believed to be the frontrunners for those managerial positions respectively.

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