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Man Utd star nearing return can finally give Ten Hag his ideal midfield duo, they impressed in pre-season – opinion

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Erik ten Hag’s midfield hasn’t quite worked this season with injuries and an ageing Casemiro proving costly to Manchester United.

This campaign has had a series of issues for Erik ten Hag who has seen his side regress from the one which won the League Cup and finished third last season.

This has been caused by numerous factors with injuries playing a catastrophic role, along with some players simply not being cut out for it anymore.

One player who has been out injured for what feels like the entire season is £55m man Mason Mount who only joined last summer but has yet to really arrive at the club.

Now though, the No 7 is back in training and should be back in contention to play after the upcoming international break, but he is returning to a vastly different midfield to the one he left.

So where does he fit in after the arrival of Kobbie Mainoo in particular…

  • READ MORE: Who is Kobbie Mainoo? Inside the life of Man Utd’s rising star, including his parents, brother and school

Arsenal v Manchester United - Pre-Season Friendly

Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images

Erik ten Hag will finally get the chance to start his ideal midfield duo

The return of Mount could hand Ten Hag the chance to field his dream midfield duo that he clearly had his heart set on in pre-season. Mount alongside Mainoo is a midfield which is excellent on the ball and in progressing play through the lines.


Against Arsenal in their final game together, Mainoo and Mount had United 2-0 up at halftime with both impressing on the ball, seeing United build out play from the back with ease.

Right now, Casemiro is the main player building out from the back but he struggles, which is why United get caught in possession so often and sem incapable of holding onto the ball.

Moving Mainoo to this role where he is charged with starting phases of play while Mount is next to him to do the same and progress play, could be a duo which keeps the ball secure, allowing United to finally dominate some games.

Obviously Ten Hag’s desire for this partnership to be built was soon destroyed as both spent substantial periods on the sidelines, but with both hopefully about to be fit, it could see Mount and Mainoo reunited.

Mason Mount will be like a new signing for Manchester United

After joining last summer, many were confused as to where Mount would be playing as he isn’t exactly a natural fit in a pivot, while dropping Bruno Fernandes seems far fetched.

Mount however is set to return and if played alongside Mainoo, could be like a new signing in midfield after the recent frustrations of watching Casemiro play.

If his return also comes with Lisandro Martinez coming back too, United could instantly shift from playing awful counter attacking football to beginning to dominate teams again with two excellent passers and progressive players swapped in for two who aren’t so strong in that manner.

Ten Hag could have his ideal duo for the final 10 games of the season, and with that he needs displays to improve as he has no excuse.

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