Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag says he can’t ignore David de Gea’s bad kick against Real Betis after the Spanish goalkeeper struggled to play the ball from behind .
Ten Hag believes De Gea’s distribution has improved this season but highlighted concern ahead of Manchester United’s home game against Southampton on Sunday.
De Gea’s kicks were particularly poor in the first half of Manchester United’s 4-1 victory in the first leg of their Europa League Round of 16 tie with Real Betis.
On one occasion, De Gea passed the ball straight to Juanmi but Manuel Pellegrini’s side failed to capitalize.
When asked if De Gea could improve his weakness, Ten Hag replied: “As of today, I can’t ignore it, but I think we’ve seen many games that he has. very well done.
“I don’t know what the reason was. It was very windy, a different ball, he probably had problems with that, but I know we can deal with it and it will be better on Sunday.
“We are working on that, but David is working on that.
“But I think we’ve seen this season that he’s improving and will continue to improve, I’m sure.”
Ten Hag could put Anthony Martial back in contention for the first time since February 1, but the Dutchman stressed he must treat the Frenchman with caution.
When asked if he was worried about Martial suffering another injury setback, Ten Hag replied: “Yes, but I think we had a good plan all the time and it worked so far, not always good.
“But he’s on his way back, he’s back in training but we’ll be careful, yes.”
Christian Eriksen is another player who has been sidelined through injury in recent months.
Ten Hag is confident Eriksen, who suffered an ankle injury in United’s FA Cup win over Reading on January 28, will feature again this season with the midfielder set to return in April.
“I think he will play, yes, definitely,” Ten Hag said.
“But I can’t say now an expectation, but I think his progress in rehabilitation is okay, going as planned so we will definitely see him but not before the international break.
“Oh, yes, he is (involved in the team talks). But his main focus at the moment is to come back as soon as possible because we need all the players.
United return to the Premier League against a Southampton side who are second from bottom.
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