Old Trafford answered Ten Hag’s call

Tuesday 23 August 2022 16:30

Even before a ball was kicked in Monday evening’s meeting with Liverpool, Erik ten Hag knew the impact that the Old Trafford support could have on his Manchester United team.

“The stadium is meant to bring fight and cooperation,” he said earlier this month.

“But we have to give the example out on the pitch, we must have the right attitude and that attitude means hard work but also especially, it means being brave. 

“If we bring that commitment, then I think they [the fans] will like it and they will bring the fight back.”
90 in 20: United v Liverpool Video

90 in 20: United v Liverpool

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The United players brought the fight from the very first seconds against our arch rivals on Monday night, the Theatre of Dreams was electric, and for this Red who had the privilege of being in the stands, it was quite simply a joy to behold.

Even before the first whistle, the homecoming for our European Championship-winning Lionesses and the introduction to new signing Casemiro charged the batteries. 

And once Lisandro Martinez alerted Mohamed Salah to his presence during a challenge in the opening moments, there was no going back. Old Trafford was in play and hungry for more.
Diogo Dalot tweeted after the game that he couldn’t describe the level of support in the stadium, and although it’s my job to try and do so, I don’t think there are any words that can properly explain the sensation of feeling like you’re pursuing glory with your team from the stands. 

It was evident in the players' performance that they felt that backing too. Every successful tackle, duel and block was roared, and it feels very much like the only near silences were in the split seconds between the enthused ‘go on’ and celebratory shouts for United's two goals.

The waves of noise were constant, and while the atmosphere alone cannot win you the points, it can spur the players a long way towards doing so.

That electricity left me with a spring in my step as I made my way out to the surrounding streets around Old Trafford. After a difficult start to the season, I now felt optimistic, sensing this was something for everyone involved to build upon.
Old Trafford was bouncing on Monday evening.

Away trips to Southampton and then Leicester City now await us, and one hopes the Reds can keep the momentum rolling before a return to the Theatre of Dreams to face Arsenal a week on Sunday.

The Gunners, Leeds, Newcastle, Tottenham and West Ham will be the five Premier League sides we face next on home turf - before this winter’s hiatus - and the M16 crowd will no doubt have a huge role to play in those fixtures too.

The opinions in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Manchester United Football Club.


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