Erik ten Hag has told his Manchester United players they must continue to improve and show ‘fighting spirit’ after Monday’s Premier League win over Liverpool.
The Red Devils fully deserved three points at Old Trafford, Ten Hag’s first in the division since becoming manager.
While Ten Hag was thrilled with the win over the club’s main rivals, he said that his side had ‘just started’ and claimed they need to show the same levels in the next game, when United travel to Southampton on Saturday.
“Well, we have a long way to go,” said the former Ajax manager after the game. “When you are in a process, you have to deal with setbacks and also highlights.
“Today is a highlight but we just started. What we have to get is the way to above. There is a lot of room for improvement and that is what we have to work for but, I hope the players now understand the basis always of a team. Fighting spirit.”
The impressive display against Liverpool was not expected by most following dismal showings in the opening games as United lost to Brighton & Hove Albion and Brentford.
The Red Devils were vastly improved in the win over Liverpool from those two matches, and Ten Hag was asked why that was the case.
“It’s always what you have to find out when you’re coming into the club,” he responded. “You have to let the players know that you’re a team, so it surprised me at Brentford.
“It’s not the way I want to play football. I want to see a team. I want to see players who fight and when I talk about fight it’s not only about what you do out of possession but in possession.
“You have to be brave and also you have to invest in runs and I think we have seen it today out on the pitch.”