- Harry Kane has been a top transfer target for Man United manager Erik ten Hag this year
- Instead, the English striker moved from Spurs to FC Bayern Munich
- Listen to the latest episode of the Mail Sport podcast It’s starting!
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag insisted he has no regrets about not signing Harry Kane this summer.
Ten Hag backed United’s decision to opt for young Danish striker Rasmus Hojlund over Kane, who is desperate to secure a point in their Champions League Group A opener tonight.
It is far from the only problem for Ten Hag, who arrived in Bayern last night without 12 first-team players after adding Harry Maguire to a growing list of losses.
United, who have lost three of their first five Premier League games, entered with a 21-man squad including four goalkeepers.
Ten Hag was prepared for the inevitable questions about Kane at his press conference at the Allianz Arena last night.
Man United coach Erik ten Hag insists he has no regrets about not signing Harry Kane
Kane (left) has developed a close relationship with Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel (right) since joining the club from Tottenham
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Asked if he regretted not signing the England captain, he replied: “No.” I think we talked about it.
“We are happy with Rasmus. He was injured in the first game. He played against Arsenal, he had a starting XI (against Brighton) and now we have to integrate him into the team. You can see that he is a great talent.’
Maguire trained in Carrington yesterday (Tuesday) but was not fit enough to travel to Munich. This means United have nine players out through injury, while Donny van de Beek is not in the Champions League squad and Antony and Jadon Sancho are unavailable.
“Harry has had some ailments and we need to see how bad it is,” Ten Hag said. “He finished training but wasn’t fit enough to travel.”
“Injuries always happen in top-level football because we live on the margins.”
The Dutchman admitted his team needs to show significant improvement against one of Europe’s best sides.
Bayern won their first Champions League group game in the last 19 years with an overall score of 47:2. In fact, in 2018, Ten Hags Ajax were the last team to avoid defeat in any group game at the Allianz Arena.
“Bayern have so much individual class that you can’t stay unfocused for a fraction of a second,” said Ten Hag.
“We don’t feel like we need a restart, certainly not.” We are in a process and you can see that we play very well in parts of the games, but also in parts where we are below our level .
“We have to improve at certain levels over 90 minutes. That’s what we demand.”
Ten Hag eventually signed Rasmus Hojlund for £72million – and insisted he was “happy” with his “great talent”.