Erik ten Hag changed his tone and declared he was happy with Manchester United's overall defending this season, despite criticising his team after their 3-2 loss to Arsenal.

United fell 11 points behind the Gunners in the race for the Premier League title, with Eddie Nketiah scoring a late winner at Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

After that game, Ten Hag said United's defensive failings had been "unacceptable".

Speaking ahead of an EFL Cup semi-final first leg against Nottingham Forest, Ten Hag explained he was talking about defending of the goals specifically and is otherwise pleased with his team's efforts at the back, although there are lessons to be taken on board.

"I think in a lot of games we defended very well, we had a lot of clean sheets," Ten Hag said.

"Against Man City [in United's recent 2-1 win at Old Trafford], we defended very well. I think, in general, also against Arsenal, we defended well.

"I don't think they had many clean shots, I think the one time was from a free-kick. But the rest were shots from distance, when we had a lot of defenders in between the ball and the goal.

"That's what I meant when I said all the goals were avoidable and it can't happen. That was my point: when you concede three goals in a top game, it is very hard to win the game.

"That is what happened so that is one of the conclusions. It can't happen. We set that conclusion... we have to learn and take this lesson."

Ten Hag – who ruled Diogo Dalot, Jadon Sancho and Anthony Martial out of the Forest game – also spoke about the importance of winning trophies, with United hoping to end a run without one since May 2017.

The 52-year-old won three Eredivisie titles, two KNVB Cups and a Johan Cruyff Shield in his time in charge of Ajax, and said: "It's about that, it's about winning trophies.

"We have a good opportunity, but we have to go from game to game. So now we play Forest, two legs, so focus on the first leg and don't think further ahead because that will distract. So the aim for tomorrow is to win that game.

“It is the best feeling you can have, winning a trophy. I had the luck in my career to win some trophies and it was magnificent, especially for the fans. It's so great.

“The fans here, they have some experience, especially the older fans. And now it's a period when Manchester United didn't win any trophies and it's too long ago, so we are aware of that fact. We have to do everything to bring a trophy in."

Manchester United have triggered one-year extension clauses in the contracts of Marcus Rashford, Luke Shaw, Diogo Dalot and Fred, Erik ten Hag has confirmed.

With United three points adrift of the Premier League's top four with a game in hand ahead of the competition's resumption, each of the quartet has played a key role for Ten Hag's side.

In particular, Rashford has looked rejuvenated since the Dutchman took charge, leading the Red Devils' scoring charts with four Premier League goals this term and netting three times for England at the World Cup.

Rashford's deal had been due to expire at the end of the season, leading the forward to be linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain, but Ten Hag has confirmed the 25-year-old is set to stay.

Asked about widespread reports claiming United had extended the players' contracts, the United boss told MUTV: "Yes, I can confirm it.

"We are happy because the squad is going in the right direction and those players [have made] a massive contribution in that direction.

"We want to develop, we want to support those players and we want them to keep in our process, so that's why we came to those decisions, I'm sure they are the right decisions. 

"We want to construct a team for the future, for longer years, and those players have to be part of it."

United will resume their Premier League campaign against Nottingham Forest at Old Trafford on Tuesday, having won four of their last five home games in the competition (D1).

The Red Devils have won each of their last six games against Forest in all competitions, recording an 8-1 victory in the teams' most recent meeting in February 1999.

Barcelona are expected to be major players in the January transfer market after a busy pre-season.

The 26-time Spanish champions are top of LaLiga at the World Cup break but crashed out of the Champions League.

The Blaugrana are still battling financial challenges, while they also have some unsettled players on their books.

TOP STORY – BARCELONA PLOTTING JANUARY GUNDOGAN MOVE

Mundo Deportivo reports that Barcelona are planning to move for Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan in January, with fears Franck Kessie may exit soon.

The Blaugrana are eager to bolster their midfield options and a move for Bernardo Silva appears difficult despite their ongoing interest.

As a result, Barca have turned to the Germany international, whose contract with City ends in mid-2023. The report also claims the Catalans could move for Leicester City's Youri Tielemans.

Kessie has been linked with Premier League clubs Aston Villa and Fulham by Spanish media outlet Sport. The Ivorian only joined in July, but the club's financial position means they are open to letting players go.

ROUND-UP

– Despite being linked with a long list of names, Sport claims Barcelona will only make one signing in the January transfer window, with a right-back seen as a priority. Manchester United's Diogo Dalot, Bayern Munich's Benjamin Pavard and Villarreal's Juan Foyth are among their options.

– New Aston Villa heard coach Unai Emery wants to bring in Real Madrid's Eden Hazard and Nacho Fernandez, according to El Nacional. Spanish boss Emery left Villarreal for the Villans last month.

Juventus are ready to offer a new contract to French midfielder Adrien Rabiot, claims Tuttosport. Rabiot had been linked with an off-season move, with Manchester United mentioned as a possible destination, but has impressed this term.

– La Gazzetta dello Sport claims Milan are putting together a bid for Chelsea's Hakim Ziyech in January. The Moroccan winger is expected to cost less than €20million (£17.5m).

Inter are keen on Valencia left-back Jesus Vazquez in January and a mid-2023 move for Borussia Monchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram, reports La Gazetta dello Sport.

Cristiano Ronaldo's future at Manchester United is coming to a head, having stormed out of their midweek win over Tottenham.

Ronaldo was sanctioned by the club and suspended for Saturday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea, but United boss Erik ten Hag has reiterated the Portuguese has a role to play at the club.

However, the 37-year-old has been frustrated by his status this season after trying to force a move away in the close season.

TOP STORY – CHELSEA FLOAT OFFER TO RONALDO FOR JANUARY

Chelsea are set to offer Cristiano Ronaldo a January lifeline with the club reigniting their interest in the five-time Ballon d'Or winner, according to Sunday World.

Ex-manager Thomas Tuchel was not keen to pursue Blues owner Todd Boehly's interest in Ronaldo in the last transfer window but with the German gone Chelsea are ready to move, drawn in by the Portuguese's huge commercial appeal.

The report claims Chelsea have floated a short-term deal until the end of the season to Ronaldo, with the option of a further year. Ronaldo is prepared to accept a pay cut to make the deal happen too.

ROUND-UP

– Napoli's Georgian whizz Khvicha Kvaratskhelia is being tracked by Manchester City, claim The Sun. The winger only joined Napoli in July but has dazzled with seven goals in 14 appearances.

– Calciomercato claims Chelsea defender Trevor Chalobah is being tracked by Inter as a potential replacement for the soon-to-be out of contract Milan Skriniar.

Barcelona have an interest in young Borussia Dortmund striker Youssouf Moukoko, according to SPORT.

– The Mirror reports Real Madrid are interested in Manchester United's Portuguese right-back Diogo Dalot. Barcelona are also monitoring him.

– The Sun also reports Manchester United have joined Liverpool in pursuing a move for Chicago Fire's Colombian teenage forward Jhon Duran.

Erik ten Hag is not concerning himself about contract talks with key Manchester United players including Cristiano Ronaldo and is instead focused on performances on the pitch.

United have a host of players out of contract at the end of the season, although some have options in their existing deals for a further season.

Ronaldo is one of those, along with David de Gea and Marcus Rashford, but Diogo Dalot – who has started all nine Premier League matches at right-back this season – could be free to leave.

Those situations will need addressing, but Ten Hag is happy to park them for now.

"At this moment we only think about performing," the manager said. "We have a lot of games to go, so I don't want to get that interfered by talks.

"We have to focus on football and performances, not on negotiating."

The future of De Gea, like that of Ronaldo, has regularly been the subject of speculation, but he remains United's first choice.

Neither Martin Dubravka nor Tom Heaton have provided a genuine threat to De Gea this season, although Dean Henderson is only out on loan.

Ten Hag added: "We didn't make a decision on him, but what I can say is that I am really happy with David de Gea.

"His first two performances of the season were not his best, but after he brings us a lot for the defensive department, he gives stability and as a person I like him.

"But first we go to the winter, and then we will talk about how to deal with the situations."

Diogo Dalot believes the underlying spirit shown in Manchester United's dramatic 1-0 win over Omonia Nicosia promises to take them far as a team.

United looked destined to be frustrated by their visitors in Thursday's Europa League clash at Old Trafford, but the hosts eventually scored with their 34th shot.

Scott McTominay dealt the decisive blow after Omonia goalkeeper Francis Uzoho had performed admirably to keep the game goalless.

With his goal, McTominay became the first substitute to score a winning goal in the 90th minute or later in a European match for United since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the 1999 Champions League final.

Like Solskjaer on that occasion, McTominay came off the bench to net his winner, and Dalot felt that reflected well on United's depth and the strength of character that runs through the squad.

"I think that this is what will take us to places," he said.

"Be a squad as a full, not just 11 or 12, 13 players, be a complete squad and I think everyone feels that they can get a chance if they work hard, if they fight for it.

"I think this competition is healthy for everyone – especially us as players. It always improves us and I think, as a squad, it's the best that you can have."

He added: "We had to be patient. We created – I don't know how many chances we created – but I think we could be a little bit more clinical, but I think we deserved it at the end, the goal.

"When that happens I think it has to come out the patience to not be frustrated because you see the time going and going and you don't score a goal, but I think we did well.

"We kept patience, especially around their box. Like I said, we could be a little bit more clinical but, at the end, I think we deserved the goal and the three points."

Dalot's analysis of United not being clinical enough was highlighted by the fact their one goal came from 4.3 expected goals (xG).

That was only the second time since 2010 that United recorded more than 4.0 xG (excluding penalties) in a single match, and yet they still only scraped by.

Nevertheless, it was also an eighth win in 10 matches across all competitions, with those two blemishes coming against Manchester City and Real Sociedad.

That demolition by City aside, United do appear to be making progress under Erik ten Hag, though Dalot accepts they are not where they want to be yet.

"I think we still have a lot of time and space to improve," he said. "But the games are coming fast so we have to be prepared each game for different kinds of things that the manager can ask for us.

"But overall, I think we are reacting well to what he has been asking – especially after the pre-season, where we had a lot of information coming to us."

United are next in action on Sunday when they face Newcastle United at Old Trafford.

Manchester United are joining Milan in the chase for midfielder Davide Frattesi, with Sassuolo reportedly willing to cash in on him if their asking price is met.

Frattesi, 23, burst onto the scene this past season after returning from three consecutive loan stints in Serie B, earning 35 league starts before taking a step forward this term with three goals in nine games.

His rapid ascension earned him his first senior international cap for Italy in June, and he has since started in big Nations League fixtures against Germany and England.

There was a belief he could leave the club this past transfer window, when Sassuolo also sold Gianluca Scamacca to West Ham, but his continued improvement means he could be gone in January.

 

TOP STORY – UNITED PONDER MOVE FOR SASSUOLO'S FRATTESI

According to Calciomercato, United sent scouts to Sassuolo to get a closer look at the six-foot tall midfielder, and were told he could be available for a price of €35million.

United may find that a bit rich after recent reports their financial position will only allow them to make a move for one of Jude Bellingham or Frenkie de Jong, but they could receive a cash injection of their own if they are to part ways with 23-year-old defender Diogo Dalot. Calciomercato also claims Dalot wishes to leave the club, and Juventus have a strong interest in him. 

Frattesi's contract ties him to the Serie A side until 2026, giving them all the leverage in the negotiation, and with Milan's interest already established, that price tag may not be an unreasonable demand.

 

ROUND-UP

– Gazzetta dello Sport are reporting Juventus are preparing a January move for Lazio's Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, who will only have 18 months remaining on his contract.

– After reportedly turning down a bid of €60m from Paris Saint-Germain in the most recent transfer window, Tuttosport now claims Inter will accept a bid in the range of €25m for centre-back Milan Skriniar in January, with his contract set to expire at the end of the season.

– Sky Sport's Florian Plettenberg believes PSV forward Cody Gakpo has no interest in joining Leeds United, who are said to have launched a move for him on deadline day, and will instead hold out for a bigger move.

– According to Record, Tottenham are keen on signing 21-year-old Sporting midfielder Manuel Ugarte, although his price is believed to be set at €80m.

– The Athletic are reporting Erling Haaland has a €200m release clause in his Manchester City contract that can be activated by any team outside of England as soon as 2024.

Cristiano Ronaldo's future at Manchester United remains uncertain after he reportedly tried to leave in the offseason.

The Portugal great has struggled to break into United's starting XI in the Premier League this term.

And Ronaldo cut a frustrated figure in United's 3-2 win over Omonia Nicosia in the Europa League on Thursday.


TOP STORY – MLS CLUB TO OFFER RONALDO A WAY OUT

David Beckham-owned MLS club Inter Miami are set to offer Cristiano Ronaldo a way out of Manchester United with a contract worth £30million per year, reports The Daily Star.

Ronaldo, who is a regular visitor to Florida, could make the move in January, with Phil Neville's Miami planning to replace Gonzalo Higuain, who announced his retirement last week.

One stumbling block, however, is that the deal is on the condition Ronaldo joins Inter on a free transfer, with United - who insisted on a fee when clubs enquired in the last transfer window - seemingly content to retain him for now.


ROUND-UP

– The Mirror claims Leeds United have agreed personal terms with PSV's Cody Gakpo, beating Manchester United in the pursuit for the 23-year-old Dutch forward. Leeds still need to thrash out a transfer fee with PSV for Gakpo to move in January.

Paris Saint-Germain have joined the long list of clubs pursuing Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk reports Fichajes. Arsenal, Newcastle United and Real Madrid are also keen on him.

PSG are also chasing a deal for Adrien Rabiot who is set to exit Juventus when his contract expires in mid-2023, according to Fichajes.

– El Nacional claims Real Madrid are interested in Benfica's 18-year-old centre-back Antonio Silva. Manchester United are also monitoring the Portuguese stopper.

– Manchester United's Diogo Dalot is being considered by Barcelona, who need to bolster their right-back options, reports Sport.

Erik ten Hag was justified in criticising his Manchester United players on the back of last week's heavy Premier League loss to Manchester City, full-back Diogo Dalot has said.

United's four-match winning league run was ended in emphatic style by rivals City, who led 4-0 at half-time and 6-1 in the second half en route to an eventual 6-3 victory.

It marked the fourth time United had conceded six goals in a Premier League match and leaves them sixth in the table after seven matches of the 2022-23 campaign.

Ten Hag admitted after the match his side produced an "unacceptable" display, one in which they were "undisciplined", "lacked belief" and "made wrong decisions".

And Dalot, who played the full 90 minutes at the Etihad Stadium, accepts he and his team-mates can have no complaints regarding their manager's choice words.

"[Ten Hag's comments] did not hurt. I think this should be the standard of this club," he told reporters. "If you play for Man United you believe every single game. 

"You have to have confidence as well, but you have to take the responsibility that you're playing for the biggest club in the world. 

"This has to be normal for us but in a good way – not be overwhelmed but take it as a responsibility and this has to be the standard for every player."

Dalot retained his place at right-back for Thursday's Europa League group trip to Omonia Nicosia as United responded to the City defeat with a 3-2 comeback win.

It was not a vintage performance from United, with Karim Ansarifard giving the hosts a shock half-time lead, but Dalot says picking up all three points is all that matters.

"After a defeat like City it is always tough, but it is time to take responsibility and especially improve in some respects, which we should for the rest of the season," he said. 

"We had a lot of challenges [against Omonia] and we needed a response. The three points is what we came for and we are happy with that.

"Overall we could have controlled the game much more than we did, especially in the last minutes and also in the minutes after we conceded."

Marcus Rashford was introduced at the midway stage against Omonia and scored twice for United, either side of assisting fellow substitute Anthony Martial.

That made Rashford the first United substitute to both score and assist in a Europa League match, with this their 47th game in the competition.

"The substitutes made a really good impact, which is amazing for us as a team. I'm really happy with that," Dalot said. "They deserve it as well. 

"It shows every player wants to play, to show they have a role in this team. Overall, there are some really positive things to take but also some things that need to get better."

United return to league action on Sunday with a trip to Everton, against whom the Red Devils have won just one of their past seven league matches.

Diogo Dalot insists Portugal's approach in their final Nations League Group A2 game against Spain will not be any different after rising to the top of the table.

A comfortable 4-0 victory over the Czech Republic in Prague, where the Manchester United full-back scored a brace, came alongside a surprising 2-1 defeat for Spain against Switzerland.

Those results set up a decisive match between Portugal and Spain on Tuesday in Braga, where the hosts know avoiding defeat will secure a spot in next year's Finals tournament.

Despite now finding themselves in pole position, Dalot says the outlook ahead of the game has not changed.

"Our thinking will be the same, whether Spain had won or our result [had been different]. We're going to Braga to win," he said.

"It's going to be a very complicated game and we have to do our [work] to be able to be in the next phase."

Dalot was also pleased with the overall performance from the squad, believing it to be evidence of their strength ahead of the World Cup later this year.

"The most important thing was the good game we played collectively. I think we could still have done a little better after the third goal, taking it easy and more ball," he added.

"We had some scares there that could have given them a goal, but we kept our cool. Defensively we were also very good and I think the result speaks for itself. We played a great game, and we deserved this win.

"This is the result of the work we have been doing. We have a lot of quality. This is a strong [moment] for us. The World Cup is coming, it's a competition where we always want to be."

Diogo Dalot struck twice as Portugal crushed the Czech Republic 4-0 in Prague to go top of Group A2 in the Nations League.

The Manchester United full-back opened the scoring after 33 minutes, with club-mate Bruno Fernandes doubling Portugal's lead before Patrik Schick smashed a penalty over the bar following a VAR call at the end of the first half.

Dalot scored again shortly after the break, and Diogo Jota added gloss to the scoreline late on.

The result moved Portugal above Spain in the standings with one round of games left to play.

Antonin Barak wasted the best chance for the hosts on the half-hour mark as he headed wide, and he would rue his error when Dalot broke the deadlock from close range after Rafael Leao prevented the ball from going out of play by cutting back into the middle.

A dramatic end to the opening half saw Fernandes volley home Mario Rui's cross to double Portugal's lead, before Cristiano Ronaldo was penalised for handball at the other end, the VAR intervention resulting in a penalty that Schick wasted.

Any hopes of a comeback for the Czech Republic suffered a significant dent six minutes after the restart, Dalot netting his second of the game when he curled home a low effort from outside the penalty area.

Further opportunities were few and far between, but there was time for Portugal to extend their lead further, Jota heading home following a corner in the 82nd minute.

Big-spending French club Nice have struggled to start the new Ligue 1 season, with only eight points from eight games.

Ambitious Nice are sitting 13th in the table, leading to pressure on head coach Lucien Favre.

The Ligue 1 outfit finished fifth last term and have recently signed Aaron Ramsey, Ross Barkley, Alexis Beka Beka and Kasper Schmeichel.

TOP STORY – NICE KEEN ON PARKER WITH POCHETTINO NOT INTERESTED

Nice are interested in a surprise move for ex-Fulham and Bournemouth boss Scott Parker, claims Foot Mercato.

Favre is under pressure, with ex-Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain boss Mauricio Pochettino reportedly their first choice to replace him.

The Evening Standard claims Pochettino is not interested in the Nice role and instead will wait for a head coaching position with a top club in England, Spain or Italy. 

ROUND-UP

– 90min reports Manchester United will offer fresh deals to Marcus Rashford and Diogo Dalot. The pair's contracts are both due to expire in mid-2023, albeit with the option of one-year extensions, but United want to lock them down beyond that.

– Erik ten Hag will decide on Donny van de Beek's future at United in October, according to the Manchester Evening News. The Dutchman has only managed three appearances this term.

– Fabrizio Romano reports Tottenham target Kim Min-Jae has a release clause in his Napoli contract after joining the Italian club from Fenerbahce in July, but it cannot be triggered in January. Napoli are happy with the centre-back's impact and are not interested in letting him go.

Chelsea target Anthony Gordon is in the midst of contract talks with Everton that are "progressing well", claims inews. Gordon is set for a substantial pay rise.

Leicester City are set to offer manager Brendan Rodgers more time to turn around the side's poor start to the new season, although the reception of fans towards him at their next home game will be a factor for key decision makers, reports The Athletic.

Chelsea's first big transfer splash under new boss Graham Potter could reportedly be RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol, after the club had a £77million bid rejected before the deadline.

Gvardiol is young at 20, but he does not lack experience, having already been awarded 10 senior international caps for Croatia, as well as racking up 47 club appearances in all competitions last season for Leipzig.

He was one of many high-profile defenders to be enquired about during Chelsea's search that ended up landing Leicester City's Wesley Fofana and Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly.

But with Koulibaly already 31 and Thiago Silva now 37, the club may feel it is best to figure out the succession plan sooner rather than later.


TOP STORY – CHELSEA PLAN BIG MOVE FOR GVARDIOL IN JANUARY

With over £150m spent between Fofana, Koulibaly and Marc Cucurella, while being tied with Manchester United for the fewest goals scored in the Premier League by a team in the top-half (eight from six games), it is curious to see the Stamford Bridge side still so desperate for defensive help.

It remains to be seen what kind of budget Potter will be allowed to use in the January window, given all the recent signings had been under Thomas Tuchel's guidance, and it is also fair to assume a potential Gvardiol deal would not have this season's results in mind, given their previous offer included loaning him back to Leipzig.

Ownership's willingness to open up the cheque book in January would have likely been discussed during their recruitment of Potter, and Bild remain convinced Chelsea's interest with the young Croatian is far from over.


ROUND-UP

– According to The Mirror, Arsenal and Newcastle United will compete for the signature of 26-year-old Benfica left-back Alex Grimaldo, who is said to be available for £8.6m due to being in the last year of his contract.

– The Metro is reporting United full-back Diogo Dalot turned down a move to Milan, instead wishing to fight for his spot at Old Trafford.

– According to inews, Newcastle are joining the race for Vasco da Gama teenager Andrey Santos, who reportedly has a £30m price tag and is a target of Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona.

Jordi Alba is unsettled at Barcelona amid interest from Inter, but remains committed to the club where he now has to contend with Alejandro Balde and Marcos Alonso for the starting role, according to Marca.

Diogo Dalot hailed Antony's instant impact at Manchester United and backed the winger to "adapt quickly", with the partnership made easier between the pair due to their native Portuguese language.

Former Ajax winger Antony, who United paid an initial £81.3million (€95m) for, scored just three days after moving to Old Trafford as he netted in Sunday's 3-1 win over Arsenal.

That strike made Antony, aged 22 years and 192 days, the youngest Brazilian to score on his Premier League debut for any team.

Dalot operated at right-back behind the 22-year-old, the Portugal international starting his sixth game in succession for United, which suggests he may be Erik ten Hag's preferred option going forward.

While the pair hail from different countries, they both speak Portuguese – a factor that Dalot believes will help Antony settle into life in Manchester.

"I mean I think you could see the impact he had straight away in our team," Dalot said of his team-mate as United prepare to face Real Sociedad in the Europa League on Thursday. 

"It will take time for us to adapt to each other, but I think he adapted really quickly in the few days that he had in training and especially in the game [3-1 win over Arsenal].

"Obviously it makes it a little bit easier for me to speak to him in Portuguese, it comes out a little bit quicker than English.

"But I think he's a very good kid, very open to getting help as well, which is good, I think he'll adapt quickly. Everybody welcomed him as if he'd been here a long time, and I'm sure he'll be very successful."

Antony is not the only Brazilian to arrive for Ten Hag's side, with Casemiro leaving Real Madrid to join United, who have also brought in the likes of Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez and Tyrell Malacia.

Those new signings appear to be settling in, with United recording four straight Premier League victories after opening with two defeats, including a 4-0 hammering at Brentford.

Ten Hag has constantly reiterated United are far from the finished article – sitting fifth in the embryonic Premier League table, just three points behind leaders Arsenal – and Dalot is glad to see an upturn in form.

"It's always difficult when you lose games. Obviously, the mood is not the same, but in our heads we always come here every day to give 100 per cent, to get better in every aspect that we can," he added.

"After Brentford, we had a full week to prepare for a game we knew would be difficult. We won it, it's in the past, now we want to focus on tomorrow, and do the same thing every day, give 100 per cent and win games."

Dalot started just 19 league games last season under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick, but believes Ten Hag is now rewarding him for fighting for his position with Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

"I'm enjoying the opportunities I'm being given. This is why I came here, to play games, to give my best every single game, to be ready for every game, and this is what I've been doing and what I've been fighting for," he continued. 

"Competition will always be there, this is a club with high standards and high demands, this is the way that I like to work. I will try to keep on doing it for as long as I can. It's been a very positive start."

Manchester United's players must "be ready to hear things we don't want to" from new manager Erik ten Hag if they are to avoid a repeat of last season, according to full-back Diogo Dalot.

Ten Hag officially replaced interim boss Ralf Rangnick at Old Trafford last month on the back of United posting their lowest-ever Premier League points tally (58) in the 2021-22 campaign.

The Dutchman's tenure has started in a positive fashion with three wins and a draw during the Red Devils' pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia, scoring 13 goals in the process.

However, Ten Hag criticised his team for an "unacceptable" loss of concentration in Saturday's friendly with Aston Villa, which finished in a 2-2 draw despite United leading by two goals at half-time.

Dalot, who played 67 minutes of the game in Perth, accepts that such comments must be taken on board.

"It is discipline. We need to be ready for that, to be ready to hear things that maybe we don't want to hear," Dalot said. "Everything is for the greater good of the team and that’s the most important thing.

"I feel that we start from scratch: new manager, new stuff, new energy, new players coming in, and we’re looking forward to playing with them as well. We need to build a team, a staff, a club, everyone together and go forward."

Jadon Sancho's third goal of pre-season and a Matty Cash own goal put United in a commanding position against Villa at Optus Stadium, but Leon Bailey pulled one back and Calum Chambers headed a stoppage-time leveller.

"We should have come into the second half a little bit more lively," Dalot said. "Obviously we were winning 2-0, but we need to keep the tempo, keep the ball, we don't want to concede so many counter-attacks that we conceded.

"But it is something to learn for the future. We are going to analyse the game for sure and take the lessons. We need to be proactive, not just the full-back – everyone. Read the game, be always on our toes.

"Mentally we have to be connected all the time, and hopefully we can improve a little bit more as well and go to the season."

Dalot has started all four of United's pre-season friendlies, suggesting he has dislodged Aaron Wan-Bissaka as first-choice right-back heading into Ten Hag's first season in charge.

The Portugal international has struggled to hold down a place since arriving from Porto in 2018, and was sent out on loan to Milan in the 2020-21 campaign, but he is up for the challenge of proving himself.

"I want to be ready for the manager, for the club – every time he needs me I'm going to be there," Dalot said.

"I need to show my qualities as well. This is why I came here, to show to this club I'm capable of playing many games for it. This is what I want."

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