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Antonio Conte had been linked to Manchester United following the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
Antonio Conte had been linked to Manchester United following the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Picture: Getty)

Antonio Conte has warned incoming Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag of the enormous pressure he will be forced to contend with following confirmation of his appointment.

The 52-year-old will begin his seismic rebuilding job in the summer after putting pen to paper on a contract that will take him through until 2025, with the option of extending for a further 12 months.

Ten Hag will inherit a fractured dressing room and a side that looks set to miss out on Champions League qualification following a miserable run of results under interim boss Ralf Rangnick.

Erik ten Hag will remain at Manchester United until the end of the season
Erik ten Hag will remain at Manchester United until the end of the season (Picture: Getty)

Conte was among the leading contenders to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after the Norwegian was sacked in November, but United opted to give Rangnick the job on a temporary basis.

The former Chelsea boss has since turned Tottenham’s season around, while United’s campaign has descended into farce with Tuesday’s 4-0 defeat at Liverpool the latest humiliation.

‘For sure we are talking about a big club, an important club,’ said Conte when asked for his immediate reaction to Ten Hag’s appointment.

‘Don’t forget that last season United were in second place and improve the squad with Varane, Sancho and Ronaldo.

‘It’s strange but they’ve improved the squad and have done worse than last season. It shows it’s not easy, particularly in England.

‘In England it’s a big job for every manager, the level is so high. When you’re at Manchester United the pressure is massive.

‘You have to fight to win trophies. It’s not easy because other teams have the same idea.’

Ten Hag, meanwhile, will focus his efforts on guiding Ajax to the Eredivisie title over the course of the next few weeks before he officially starts work at United.

In a message to the club’s fanbase on Thursday, he said: ‘It is a great honour to be appointed manager of Manchester United and I am hugely excited by the challenge ahead.

‘I know the history of this great club and the passion of the fans, and I am absolutely determined to develop a team capable of delivering the success they deserve.

‘It will be difficult to leave Ajax after these incredible years, and I can assure our fans of my complete commitment and focus on bringing this season to a successful conclusion before I move to Manchester United.’

MORE : Steve McClaren set for Old Trafford return as Manchester United approve Erik ten Hag request

MORE : Former Manchester City star Micah Richards claims Manchester United are ’10 years behind’ rivals Liverpool

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

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Source: Metro Sport

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