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2022-2023-Season

#PLStories- Joel Veltman reveals how Brighton ruined ten Hag’s debut #BHAFC #MUFC

Joel Veltman did not have time for a catch-up with his old boss after Albion beat Manchester United.

He spoke to Donny van de Beek, Tyrell Malacia and Christian Eriksen but not Erik ten Hag after the Seagulls’ 2-1 win.

But he said he saw enough to suspect the former Ajax coach WILL cause opponents problems as he settles in at Old Trafford.

Veltman was outstanding again for the Seagulls, for what he did and for how his capabilities, and those of Adam Webster, allowed Graham Potter to play a certain way.

Albion were able to defend strongly but also have a side packed with creative, potentially attacking players.

They also showed the ability to adapt to problems on the pitch, even though Webster admitted it was hard to hear each other at times when the home fans found their voices.

There were maybe three ways of appreciating the game at Old Trafford.

You could enjoy the occasion. Arriving at the famous, imposing stadium more than three hours before kick-off and finding a real buzz already.

Even the anticipation of heading to the North West hearing so much build-up to one that day’s main events in world football.

Okay, almost all the build-up was focussed on United. But that was fine. Actually, it was perfect.

And the sounds and sights of a packed stadium in the sunshine, with the away corner vibrant, of course.

Then you could enjoy the afternoon for the football being played. A clever back heel, some shrewd forward play, a leaping fingertip catch, an end-to-end move.

Thirdly, you could look at it as probably the loudest game of chess you have ever seen.

The tacticians, both amateur and professional, had a field day analysing what went on between the former Ajax boss and the English coach who is quietly taking the Premier League by storm.

There is a wealth of tactical analysis around in coverage of the Prem these days.

A bit like all the stats and data you now see, it is fascinating to a point – before it becomes a bit tedious.

But Veltman summed it up succinctly – that he and Webster had to do “one-and-a-half jobs” to play their part wide of Lewis Dunk.

(Actually Webster used the same phrase in his interviews deep beneath the Stretford End).

The Holland international told The Argus: “I know how it is, I know how he (ten Hag) plays.

“Of course, different stadium, different fans, different players but you could see at the beginning we are struggling because of his ideas.

“So I think he will do great things here.

“There were two tens, Fernandes and Eriksen, and two wide players, Rashford and Sancho.

“We were struggling with Webster and me, ‘Okay, shall we go inside’ and then we leave Rashford and they played the diagonal pass.

“In the end we did one-and-a-half jobs. I think our shape was better after 15 minutes.

“Moises and Pascal were sometimes central defenders as well because their tens were quite high on the pitch so we were struggling a bit with that.

“But we stuck together, got compact and waited for our chances.”

Of course, the Albion back three and even the goalkeeper can all play a bit.

There was talk about them playing a bit longer than usual.

But the second goal was a masterpiece of short passing almost from their own byline.

Veltman said: “We played out sometimes unbelievably well.

“How we performed with the ball was really good.

“We could create some chances for us.

“It started from the back and Pascal Gross finished it.”

Erik ten haag

Joel Veltman did not have time for a catch-up with his old boss after Albion beat Manchester United.

Joel Veltman said: “I know how it is, I know how he (ten Hag) plays. Of course, different stadium, different fans, different players but you could see at the beginning we are struggling because of his ideas. So I think he will do great things here. There were two tens, Fernandes and Eriksen, and two wide players, Rashford and Sancho. We were struggling with Webster and me, ‘Okay, shall we go inside’ and then we leave Rashford and they played the diagonal pass. In the end we did one-and-a-half jobs. I think our shape was better after 15 minutes. Moises and Pascal were sometimes central defenders as well because their tens were quite high on the pitch so we were struggling a bit with that. But we stuck together, got compact and waited for our chances.”

Of course, the Albion back three and even the goalkeeper can all play a bit. There was talk about them playing a bit longer than usual. But the second goal was a masterpiece of short passing almost from their own byline.

Joel Veltman said: “We played out sometimes unbelievably well. How we performed with the ball was really good. We could create some chances for us. It started from the back and Pascal Gross finished it.”

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