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Erik Ten Hag defends Andre Onana again after Champions League horror show

Dec 2, 2023

Erik ten Hag, the manager of Manchester United, has commended Altay Bayindir for adjusting to life at Old Trafford but has refused to hold Andre Onana accountable for his disappointing performance against Galatasaray.

On Wednesday, November 29, the Red Devils stumbled to a 3-3 draw away from home against Galatasaray during the UEFA Champions League. With a hand in every single one of the home team’s goals, Onana experienced a night to forget.

Two easy saves by the Cameroon international were missed as Hakim Ziyech scored two long-range free kicks in the 29th as well as 62nd minutes. After that, he was caught out of position, giving Muhammed Akturkoglu the opportunity to equalise the score in the 71st minute and eliminate Manchester United’s two-goal lead.

After joining Manchester United this summer from Inter Milan, Onana has been unable to justify his rumoured £47.2 million transfer cost. In 20 games in all competitions, he has already given up 33 goals. This season in the UCL, he has also committed high-profile mistakes versus Bayern Munich and Galatasaray.

Ten Hag has been pressured by several supporters to try Altay Bayindir in goal. The Turkey international joined the team this summer for a rumoured £4.3 million cost, but he hasn’t made his team debut yet. He came from Fenerbache.

Instead of placing the burden on Onana, Ten Hag made a suggestion that if Bayindir continues to improve, he may get his first start. He said, “We are very happy with our keeper group, with Andre, with Altay and also Tom [Heaton]. A very good keeper group. As a group they do really well, they have good performances and they have to push each other.”

He added, “So we are very pleased with Altay, he gets used to the Premier League, he gets used to European football – which is tough when you’re coming from Turkey.But we are very pleased with that process, he’s doing very well. He has to be patient, but if he works well, if he keeps his progress, he will get his chances and then he has to take this.”

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