Four things Erik ten Hag got wrong as Man Utd unbeaten run ended by Aston Villa

Manchester United's five game unbeaten streak was brought to an end by Unai Emery's Aston Villa on Sunday afternoon.

Aston Villa heaped misery on United with a 3-1 win on Emery's return to the Premier League. The Villians got off to the perfect start when Leon Bailey gave them the lead just seven minutes in.

Before United could even pull it together, Villa grabbed a second through a delightful free-kick by Lucas Digne after 11 minutes. Emery's troops pushed for a third as they continued to attack United who had no response for their opponents buoyancy.

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It took the Red Devils just over half hour to get a shot on target when youngster Alejandro Garnacho tried his luck. Cristiano Ronaldo then got United's second attempt on goal a minute later with a powerful header that Villa keeper Emiliano Martínez did well to keep out.

Despite Villa's hold over the game, Luke Shaw gave the visitors hope when his deflected effort hit the net just before half time. But his effort was cancelled out when Ramsey scored for Villa three minutes into the second half.

Ten Hag made a myriad of mistakes going into the game. And here the Daily Star take a deeper delve into the main four things the Dutch strategist got wrong as United imploded against Villa.

What do you think Ten Hag could've done different against Villa? Let us know in the comments section below

Team selection

Ten Hag opted for 4-2-3-1 for the match, the same formation he used in United's 1-0 win over Real Sociedad in the Europa League earlier this week. His first eleven was mostly unchanged apart from the absence of Bruno Fernandes who was suspended.

Dutch playmaker Donny van de Beek was given the chance to shine in the No10 role. While young winger Alejandro Garnacho was handed a shock start, as was squad rebel Cristiano Ronaldo, who led United's attack.

But the Red Devils failed to get going as Villa stifled their creativity and limited the service to Ronaldo. United were also vulnerable at the back, and had no answer as Villa perpetually presented a threat going forward in the game.

United boss Ten Hag makes a triple change as Malacia, Elanga and Martial come on for Shaw, Garnacho and Van de Beek respectively

Preparation for Emery

New Villa boss Unai Emery's been a constant thorn in United's side over the years, and today was no different. As Arsenal boss he earned a win and two draws against the Red Devils.

And he's now the first manager who hasn't lost to United in the Prem in four games after today's result. Emery was also a pain for United as Villarreal boss when his side beat the Old Trafford giants in the Europa League final.

It seems though the Red Devils forgot how masterful Emery can be with his tactics, and failed to prepare for his superior strategies. Although it's the first time Ten Hag's gone up against his Spanish counterpart, it would've helped if he done his homework on his opposite number before the game.

Luke Shaw inclusion

Luke Shaw was given the hard task of containing Villa winger, which he failed to do miserably. Bailey scored Villa's second goal when he cut through on the flank and slotted the ball past David de Gea.

The 25-year-old continued in the same vein throughout the game and ran Shaw ragged. Ten Hag realised Shaw wasn't up to the task later on the game and replaced him after the hour mark.

Tyrell Malacia came on in place of the Englishman in the 6th minute. But it was too late by then as United aimed to keep the deficit down.

Although Shaw did make a positive contribution as it was his goal that gave United hope in the first half. The left-back's deflected shot squeezed past the Martinez just as the whistle was about to blow.

Leaving out Maguire

Harry Maguire has had an indifferent season under Ten Hag. But he looked like a new man in United's 1-0 against West Ham last week.

The centre back marshalled the game and gained support from United legends such as Patrice Evra. But the England ace was sent back to the bench following the return of Victor Lindelof.

However, Lindelof wasn't able to stem the flow of Villa's attacks throughout the game. And some may feel that Maguire could've done a better job at the back.

But one positive for United in defence was Lisandro Martinez, he put in a solid shift and was no pushover for Villa's hungry attack. His perfomance will no doubt further endear him to the United faithful.


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