Paul Merson tells Manchester United to copy Arsenal with warning for Sir Jim Ratcliffe | Football

Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Erik ten Hag (Photo by Manchester United/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Manchester United need ‘stability’ and could learn from how Arsenal stuck with Mikel Arteta to get through the club’s current problems.

That’s according to Paul Merson, who says Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his INEOS team need to ‘hit the ground running’ at Old Trafford.

United drew 2-2 with Tottenham on Sunday, leaving the club eight points off the Champions League qualifying positions.

Ratcliffe’s 25% stake in United is expected to be ratified by mid-February, at which point he will be given full control of the club’s football operations.

INEOS want to give Erik ten Hag until the end of the season before making a decision over the Dutchman’s future.

But, if results do not improve, Ratcliffe could be forced into a decision the club would rather not make.

Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

Ratcliffe will make a decision over Ten Hag this summer (Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

Merson, though, says United can learn from how Arsenal stuck with Arteta through his difficult early stages at the Emirates.

‘The new investors have to hit the ground running,’ Merson told SkySports.

‘They need change and they started that with the departure of Jadon Sancho on loan to Borussia Dortmund.

‘With that deal, you have to believe the manager is staying long-term and in fairness, if you get rid of Ten Hag, how many managers are out there who you could get in as a replacement? Could you tempt a Carlo Ancelotti for a season or so? It’s debatable.

‘What United do need is stability. They’ve done the changing manager thing a number of times since Sir Alex Ferguson left the club. It hasn’t worked.

‘We’ve seen Mikel Arteta at Arsenal backed. When many were calling for change, the Gunners gave him a chance to stamp his authority at the club and look where they are now.

‘It’s all well and good me questioning Ten Hag and speculating how he can keep his job, but if someone else comes in I don’t think United’s fortunes turn around overnight.

‘However, the club don’t have any excuses now. The players and manager can’t stand behind the owners. they have to start winning football matches.’


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