Ten Hag: It's close between Dalot and Wan-Bissaka

Tuesday 04 April 2023 13:23

Erik ten Hag has expanded on the selection dilemma he faces at right-back, where both Diogo Dalot and Aaron Wan-Bissaka are battling to establish themselves as Manchester United's first-choice option.

Dalot was one of the Reds' better performers in the defeat at Newcastle United on Sunday – a game which Wan-Bissaka missed due to illness.
The latter could be back in the the squad for Wednesday's Premier League meeting with Brentford at Old Trafford (20:00 BST) after returning to team training.
But Ten Hag admits the pair's differing skillsets pose him a tricky selection puzzle, given both players have excelled during various periods of the season so far.

Dalot calls for greater consistency


Diogo reflected on a tough afternoon for the Reds at St James' Park.

“I think it's really close, the competition between them,” Erik told reporters at his pre-match press conference.
“Maybe Aaron gives you a little bit more defending, Diogo gives you maybe a little more offence.

“But I have to say I think they both have made progress in both areas, so it's really close.”
Dalot was an ever-present selection for the manager in the first phase of the season, with suspension forcing his only absence (Fulham away) before the World Cup in Qatar.
Meanwhile, Wan-Bissaka has made 18 appearances since 1 January, after missing almost four months of action between August and December.
Ten Hag admitted that usually his decision is based not just on the players' skills and form, but also their workload and and the characteristics of the opposition we are due to face.

Ten Hag's team news update


There's positive news on two recently absent Reds ahead of our league meeting with Brentford.

“You look at the opponent, you look at the load on the players and you have to manage that when you have two almost-equal players.
“Then the form they are in is also an issue and then, of course, how is the team doing in the moment? Then you make your decisions.”
Dalot played the entirety of our last meeting with Brentford – an infamous 4-0 defeat in just our second game under Ten Hag – while Wan-Bissaka was an unused substitute.
If Aaron is well enough return to first-team action against the Bees at Old Trafford, the boss will have to make that tricky decision once again.