Ten Hag talks Garnacho and Antony returns ahead of Man Utd clash

Man Utd prepare for Real Betis clash

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Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag has spoken out ahead of Thursday’s showdown with Real Betis in Spain. The Red Devils lead 4-1 from the first leg following goals from Marcus Rashford, Bruno Fernandes, Antony and Wout Weghorst. And they’ll be hoping for a straightforward night as they look to make the quarter-finals of the competition.

Ahead of the game with Betis, United boss Ten Hag explained he was unsure when Alejandro Garnacho would return from injury.

The Argentine will miss upcoming matches, something he’s already confirmed after speaking out on social media.

And Ten Hag said: I can’t say exactly [when he will be back]. It will take weeks, it is a serious injury.

“Once again, after Christian Eriksen, we have a serious injury after a contact.

“It is not a good decision. It is difficult to make a diagnosis quickly. I saw him limping and that is why I took him off.”

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He added: “He will be back before the end of the season. We need to get him back as soon as possible and we hope he is ready.”

Another player missing for Thursday’s fixture against Real Betis in Spain is Antony, who hasn’t been named in the squad.

And Ten Hag said the Brazil international was suffering with an illness, though stopped short of confirming Facundo Pellistri may start in his absence.

“Antony is ill,” said the 53-year-old, who is hoping to guide his side into yet another quarter-final.

“We have options and we will see tomorrow. We have Elanga, Bruno and Pelli.”

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Casemiro and Bruno Fernandes, should they receive a yellow card on Thursday, will miss the next European game of the season – providing United make it to the last eight.

But Ten Hag has insisted he has no qualms about playing the pair.

“They will play, both. It is a very good opponent,” stated the Dutchman.

“Last week we had a good result, but we need to go again. We need our best players and our best team.

On rotating, he added: “It is always serious and we will play our best team. We have to put up a team that can adapt during the game.

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“We know our opponent can, as they have really good players. We have to be ready to battle with them.”

Sitting alongside Ten Hag was defender Lisandro Martinez.

Though he struggled during his early weeks in England, the Argentina international has impressed for the most part since his move from Ajax back in the summer.

And Martinez has admitted he’s enjoying playing alongside Raphael Varane, insisting his team-mate is ‘amazing’.

“Rapha [Varane] is an amazing player and I really enjoy playing with him,” said the 25-year-old.

“We always enjoy training together and we are working hard.

“I think we are doing an amazing job, but we also have Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire. As a player, when you have that connection, you can get clean sheets.”

The versatile star was also asked about potentially playing in midfield for United, at a time where they’re struggling with suspensions and injuries.

And he said: “We have many good midfielders.

“Like I have said in many interviews, I will play wherever the coach wants to use me.”

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