Exclusive:‘He has the qualities needed’ - Go Ahead Eagles chief explains what Rene Hake will bring to Manchester United

Go Ahead Eagles technical director has backed Rene Hake to succeed at Manchester United.Go Ahead Eagles technical director has backed Rene Hake to succeed at Manchester United.
Go Ahead Eagles technical director has backed Rene Hake to succeed at Manchester United. | Getty Images
Paul Bosvelt spoke exclusively to ManchesterWorld ahead of Rene Hake’s appointment as Manchester United's new coach.

Rene Hake will bring ‘tactical solutions’ to Manchester United when he begins his role as the club’s new coach, and will help Erik ten Hag manage his workload. At least that’s the view of his former boss Paul Bosvelt.

Bosvelt is technical director at Go Ahead Eagles, the club Hake has left to take up a backseat position as part of Ten Hag’s coaching staff. Ruud van Nistelrooy and Jelle ten Rouwelaar are also set to join as part of the coaching shake up, although none of the appointments have been confirmed yet.

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After a disappointing Premier League campaign in 2023/24, the need for fresh ideas at Old Trafford was clear and Ten Hag advocated for three additions.

From the influx of new coaches, it’s Hake who brings the most experience. His 21-year coaching career includes spells in charge of three Eredivisie clubs and he worked with Ten Hag in their formative years as coaches in the FC Twente youth ranks.

While Hake is stepping down as a head coach to take up a back-up role, no-one in the Netherlands views this as a backward step. “I think it is a great opportunity for the coach and I think he deserves it,” Bosvelt told ManchesterWorld in an exclusive interview.

“He [Hake] had two great seasons over here. He is a guy who wants to achieve 100 percent out of everything. He has a good mindset and a good work rate. I think he has the qualities to support Erik ten Hag very well. 

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“I think the combination with Ruud van Nistelrooy who can help the players with small details, is very good. It will help Erik ten Hag, although I think he already did a very good job.

“He can support the vision of Erik and the way of working,” Bosvelt added. “He has a top mentality and he can bring that over. He works at a high level and is very tactical. He has good tactical solutions for anything. He has a lot of experience and can take a lot of the work off Erik ten Hag.

Hake leaves Go Ahead Eagles with his reputation greatly enhanced following two previous dismissals at Twente and Utrecht. Last season the Deventer-based club finished in the top half and secured a spot in Europe for the 2024/25 campaign.

That led to a slight complication for Go Ahead Eagles this summer, especially when Hake first approached Bosvelt to discuss United’s interest.

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“It was bad timing because we play our first Conference League game in 17 days,” explained Bosvelt, who played 65 games for Manchester City between 2003 and 2005. “That’s football and the timing is never brilliant. It’s a pity for us but he 100 percent deserves it. They did a good job to sign him.

“When you hear from your coach and he is so delighted and eager to make the step, you can’t say no. It was a no-brainer. For us, the next step was who could replace him - that was my first reaction.”

Bosvelt, the former Dutch international knows Ten Hag from their playing days, and backed his old colleague to ‘deliver’ at Old Trafford after a mixed opening two years in charge.

“We were playing in the same period. At ‘94 to ‘97 I was in the team at FC Twente and Erik ten Hag was playing a bit at that time,” explained Bosvelt, who has been technical director at Go Ahead Eagles since 2018.

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“It was a little bit up and down but we played together. At that time he was already very serious and looking for the long-term also. He was already thinking about a lot of things that the average player was not thinking about.  He was more thinking about the long-term and the next steps. It was already in his mind.”

“I think he has done a good job at United,” Bosvelt added. “I think the club was already struggling for a couple of years and I think he brings them back a little. A coach needs time and you cannot expect that a coach after one season can undo four or five years of struggling.

“I know football and bigger clubs don’t give people the time. But I was happy for him as there was some doubt that they would continue with him [this summer]. I think he delivered in the end.”

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