Erik ten Hag praises Garnacho and takes swipe at Man Utd's previous substitutes

Erik ten Hag has praised Alejandro Garnacho’s impact off the bench in Manchester United’s 2-0 win over Wolves and feels the side have been missing his spark in recent weeks.

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The Red Devils enjoyed near total domination in Saturday’s game at Old Trafford, with Anthony Martial putting the side ahead in the first half and debutant Wolves keeper Daniel Bentley forced to make a string of saves.

But they had to wait until the 94th minute to finally kill off the match, with Garnacho – who had been subbed on around 10 minutes earlier – breaking clear and firing in off the inside of the post.

It was the Argentine’s first appearance since the middle of March but he showed no signs of rustiness, with Ten Hag delighted to finally see his subs make big contributions off the bench after back-to-back defeats.

‘You see [his impact] is very, very important but I think, first of all, all the subs had a good impact,’ said the Dutchman at his post-match press conference.

‘That was one of the problems in the last weeks, that our subs were bad, they didn’t have an impact. But today all the subs came on and straight away had an impact on the game.

‘And Garna [Garnacho] of course everyone can see it. He scored a great goal, he came in and he did – I think – almost everything good.

‘And then he scored the goal and that will give him belief and it’s good for us, because it’s good for the rest of the season that he’s back. The goal gives him confidence and he can have an impact.’

Asked what the 18-year-old needs to do to keep improving and work his way into the starting XI, Ten Hag continued: ‘One of the aspects from the biggest talents is that they are mature.

‘First they take responsibility and second they are mature to bring in their skills. They have belief that they can dominate their opponents.

‘And once again I think he did that. He has a big impact in many games, either when he’s starting or coming on.

‘He’s ready, straight into the game, and that it so important for the squad that you can bring such players. But I’m happy to bring in young players and hopefully he will progress so quickly that he can compete for a starting XI position because I think that is the next challenge.

‘He is showing [he’s ready], when you score some winners, at Fulham, the assist against City for instance, now the second goal [vs Wolves]. He’s showing some things.

‘Also some things he lacks – defence transition, in pressing – he has to step up in such things. Also are you going into an action or keeping the ball, so decisions. But I think when you see it all over he is a huge talent and he’s brave.’

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