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Ten Hag opens up about rumors linking him to FC Barcelona

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Amid all the rumors linking him to FC Barcelona, Erik Ten Hag felt the need to talk about his future in front of an inquisitive journalist. 

FC Barcelona is currently still looking at many names to replace Ronald Koeman, one of them is Erik Ten Hag. The Dutch coach has been linked to the Catalan club for a couple of years since he brought us that AFC Ajax squad led by Frenkie de Jong. Barcelona has attempted to keep that offensive style of play that Johan Cruyff started to implement when he arrived as a player. During the ‘70s decade, Rinus Michels already had that Total Football concept that revolutionized football since the Hungarian National Team marked an era in offensive football.

But the origins of this style came from an English-born manager by the name of Jimmy Hogan, who taught the Hungarians everything he knew. After that, Jack Reynolds taught this style to the Dutch, who perfected the method. Michels saw Cruyff as a young player and he immediately understood he was the key to perpetuating this style. It’s always a player who pushes these managers to execute the philosophy. Without a key player, playing this offensive style of football is impossible. Erik Ten Hag is the latest from a long line of Dutch managers who understand this style of play. 

Ten Hag dismisses FC Barcelona rumors.

Regardless of the rich history in the Netherlands, there are some managers who don’t always follow this school of thought. People like Louis van Gaal are also successful without the need of playing this Total Football method. Ronald Koeman is another one of these managers who doesn’t get it. Although he is a Barcelona legend, he is a defensive player at heart who led Johan Cruyff’s dream team in the early ‘90s. But as a manager, he is nothing compared to the success he reached when he wore boots.

Joan Laporta will try to sign a manager like Ten Hag but the Ajax boss is focused with his current squad. Over the last four matches, his players have scored a staggering 21 goals by playing this same style. During a small chat with an ESPN Netherlands reporter, Ten Hag decided to silence any rumor linking him to FC Barcelona: “You say it. What are you supposed to do with it? We are working on Ajax, let’s talk about this match. These kinds of rumours are nice for you, but not for us.”