Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has confessed that he is open to a big move away from the Dutch giants, but stressed that he is not actively looking to leave the club.
Ten Hag has been on the radar of a number of Europe’s top sides for a while, with Barcelona and Manchester United both recently taking interest in the Dutch tactician.
Under contract with Ajax until the summer of 2023, Ten Hag has always dismissed talk of a move away from the club, but he admitted to De Volkskrant that he would not be against leaving if the right offer arrived.
“I think I’m ready for it,” Ten Hag said of a big move to a top European side. “I would be happy to take up that challenge.
“But I’m not chasing it. If it turns out that that step will never come, I will not say that my coaching career has failed. But I think I have sufficient competences to take on that challenge.”
He then stressed that he is loving life at Ajax and in absolutely no rush to leave whatsoever, with a contract extension at the Johan Cruijff ArenA very much a possibility.
The 51-year-old is one of many managers to be under consideration by United as they prepare to make a new full-time appointment at the end of the current season.
Interim boss Ralf Rangnick will be part of the decision-making process as he transitions to a consultancy role at Old Trafford, with the German likely to be asked for his opinions on Ten Hag and fellow candidates like Mauricio Pochettino and Brendan Rodgers.
90min understands that Pochettino remains the primary target at United and his uncomfortable relationship with those in charge at Paris Saint-Germain could well work in their advantage.
However, the Argentine is also under contract until 2023, and if he cannot be freed from his deal, United may well look at Ten Hag, who has won two Eredivisie titles with Ajax and has led the side to the top of the table this year.