Erik ten Hag played a crucial role in Manchester United’s shock move for Burnley flop Wout Weghorst

Erik ten Hag “played a crucial role in Man United’s shock loan move for Burnley flop Wout Weghorst… who went untagged by scouts in last summer’s botched pursuit of Marko Arnautovic.”

  • The United manager expressed interest in the Dutch international with club scouts
  • Wout Weghorst had not previously been on the radar of those in Carrington
  • Ten Hag sees Weghorst adding ‘a new dimension’ to a growing United attack
  • Weghorst could make his debut for his new club at Crystal Palace on Wednesday

Manchester United’s Erik ten Hag was reportedly instrumental in the club’s surprise loan deal for compatriot Wout Weghorst.

Weghorst was loaned to Besiktas from Burnley after the Dutch international failed to prevent Burnley from being relegated to the league.

According to The Athletic, Ten Hag was the driving force behind Weghorst’s conquest, with the wheels set in motion following United’s 2-0 Carabao Cup win over the Clarets on 21 December.

Erik ten Hag was instrumental in signing Burnley and Holland striker Wout Weghorst

Weghorst was not on the Carrington club’s radar – even during their botched pursuit of Marko Arnautovic – until Ten Hag expressed his interest to them, the report said.

United are said to have delved deeply into the target 30-year-old’s background and habits, with feedback being largely “positive”.

Despite the striker’s record in the Premier League last season – just two goals in 20 games – ahead of the Manchester derby, Ten Hag told Dutch TV that Weghorst’s pursuit of skill would be a ‘nice challenge’ and made it Turf Moor responsible for his struggles for a “very brief period”.

Weghorst struggled for Burnley in the Premier League, scoring just two goals in 20 games

Weghorst struggled for Burnley in the Premier League, scoring just two goals in 20 games

Although Ten Hag did not know the former Wolfsburg striker personally, he had reportedly “followed his career since he was 16”.

Memphis Depay, who had endured a miserable period at United, had also been considered by Old Trafford bosses but his calls for a long-term deal have reportedly dashed any hopes of a chance at Premier League redemption.

A lack of available funds at United in January meant they couldn’t afford PSV star Cody Gakpo, who later joined Liverpool for £44million.

The Dutchman started training at Carrington on Sunday and could make his debut against Palace

The Dutchman started training at Carrington on Sunday and could make his debut against Palace

Focused on speaking with Weghorst, Ten Hag believed United could achieve a “new dimension” with the 197cm forward as a lynchpin.

While the striker saw the opportunity to join Carrington from Turkey as a “unique situation”.

The Dutchman initially trained with the squad on Sunday and could make his debut for the Red Devils on Wednesday night against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

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Maureen Mackey

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