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Erik ten Hag hails Manchester United substitutes for their role in win over Omonia

Erik ten Hag hails Manchester United substitutes for their role in win over Omonia

Manchester United head coach Erik ten Hag has praised the substitutes for their role in helping the team overcome Omonia in the Europa League on Thursday night.

The Red Devils were one goal behind at the interval of the Group E contest, and Ten Hag responded by making a double change at the break, introducing Marcus Rashford and Luke Shaw for Jadon Sancho and Tyrell Malacia.

Anthony Martial was then brought on for Bruno Fernandes in the 61st minute, before Fred and Scott McTominay were introduced in the final 15 minutes.

Rashford scored twice in the second-half comeback and also set up Martial, with Man United managing to record a 3-2 victory over Neil Lennon‘s side in Cyprus.

Ten Hag has said that an “unnecessary mistake” allowed Omonia to take the lead, but the Dutchman was pleased with the response in the second half.

Manchester United players celebrate Anthony Martial's goal against Omonia on October 6, 2022© Reuters

“We started well, then an unnecessary mistake and a really bad 10 minutes. We have to learn from it. You let the crowd get alive, you have to avoid that,” he told BT Sport.

“More runs (what he said at half time), we are too static, we have to make the opposition move to get behind – that is why we made two subs. The subs really had an impact today.”

Ten Hag said that “it was really disappointing” when Martial picked up an injury before the start of the new campaign due to his form during pre-season.

“We have already seen in pre-season, it was really disappointing when he got injured, it had an impact on our team’s performance. It has to only be a warm up, on Sunday we have to react,” he added.

Martial provided an assist off the bench in the 2-1 win over Liverpool on August 22 but was then sidelined once again with an Achilles problem.

Anthony Martial scores for Manchester United on October 2, 2022© Reuters

The former Monaco youngster came off the bench to score twice against Manchester City in the Manchester derby on Sunday, though, before also impressing as a substitute on Thursday.

The 26-year-old has now put himself in contention for a start in the team’s next Premier League game away to Everton on Sunday night.

“He is a massive player for us, he has been for a long time and when he is happy and he’s at it, he is an unbelievable player and I’ve always enjoyed playing with him,” Rashford also told BT Sport after the clash with Omonia.

Man United are believed to be keen to open talks with Martial over a new contract, but the attacker is first said to want assurances over playing time before entering into any concrete discussions.

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