Ten Hag has had a difficult time as manager of Manchester United this season, with injuries nearly crippling his team. Most of the injuries have been to his defenders, with up to seven of them picking up injuries at various points of the season so far.
Luke Shaw completed 90 minutes in his side’s second league game of the season against Tottenham Hotspur back in August as United lost 2-0. The Englishman was ruled out of action indefinitely days later with a thigh muscle injury.
Speaking to the press ahead of this weekend’s return to Premier League action against Everton, ten Hag announced that Shaw had resumed full training during the international break. The former Ajax manager revealed that the Englishman is available for the match against the Toffees, as per Goal.
“Luke Shaw will be available for Sunday, he will be in the squad. You can mention many things. You can mention his physicality, his technical ability, and his leadership, it’s clear. For a long time in the season, we didn’t have a left-back. We are very happy he’s back, it’s a good sign. He will help us be more stable, I am sure of that.” ten Hag confirmed to reporters
Ten Hag sounded relieved to confirm the availability of the former Southampton man, revealing that he expects Shaw to boost his team’s stability.
Shaw’s return to ease left-back crisis
Manchester United have struggled with various injuries this season, but their problems have been most pronounced in the left-back position. Tyrell Malacia, who joined last year from Feyenoord, has yet to play a minute this season as he remains ruled out through injury.
The injury to Shaw in August forced the Red Devils into the transfer market for a new short-term fix in the position. They tried to sign Marc Cucurella from Chelsea but failed to reach an agreement before eventually settling for Sergio Reguilon.
Reguilon has also spent time on the sidelines through injury this season, feeding into the narrative of a serious problem with the fitness level of the players.
Because of these injuries, ten Hag has had to experiment, with the likes of Sofyan Amrabat and Diogo Dalot playing at left-back on occasion for Man Utd. The return of Shaw means that he now has two fit senior left-backs for the first time this season.
Manchester United and ten Hag will hope that the return of Shaw will provide a timely boost this season as they head into a hectic period.