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Eriksen returning to training but Ten Hag says Man Utd need to win without him

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 4 Apr 2023

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Christian Eriksen returns to full training with Manchester United on Tuesday, manager Erik ten Hag has confirmed.

The Denmark international has been sidelined since January with an ankle injury but remains hopeful of featuring before the end of the season.

While Eriksen will not be available to feature against his former side, Brentford, on Wednesday, a return could be right around the corner.

“He’s not ready for tomorrow but he’s returning to the pitch and into team training today, so we now have to see how quickly he can make progress,” Ten Hag said at a press conference.

Eriksen’s continued absence in midfield is further complicated by Casemiro’s suspension. He was issued a four-match suspension following his red card in the goalless draw against Southampton and remains absent for the midweek clash, as well as Saturday’s meeting with Everton.

Ten Hag accepts that losing two players of such a high calibre has an impact on the side but called on his squad to step up, expressing a necessity to win.

“They are two quality players. In the midfield department, games will be decided. When you miss two quality players, it’s a clear [impact], but you have a squad and, when you don’t have them, you still have to win,” he added.

After winning the EFL Cup in February, United have hit a poor run of form in the Premier League with a 7-0 drubbing at the hands of Liverpool and 2-0 loss at Newcastle either side of the aforementioned draw with Saints, dropping to fifth after Tottenham’s Monday draw with Everton.

United are tied on points with Newcastle and Spurs, though hold two games in hand over the latter, but the club’s struggles in the league since ending their trophy drought at Wembley are a cause for concern.

Ten Hag sees things differently, however, highlighting the FA Cup quarter-final win over Fulham as evidence that there are no issues in securing results against Premier League opponents.

“We played 60 minutes against Southampton with 10 men, we beat Fulham, that’s a Premier League opponent, we beat Newcastle in the Carabao Cup, a Premier League opponent, so there’s no concern – we know we can beat Premier League teams,” he concluded.

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