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Erik ten Hag lauds Man Utd spirit after late Europa League win

Erik ten Hag was delighted with the spirit shown by Manchester United after substitute Scott McTominay bagged a dramatic late winner against Omonia Nicosia in the Europa League.

The Red Devils again endured a difficult night at Old Trafford against the Cypriots, who were inspired by goalkeeper Francis Uzoho.

United created plenty of chances during the 90 minutes, forcing Uzoho into making 12 saves, but they had to wait until stoppage time to make the breakthrough through McTominay – who has lost his place in the starting XI in recent weeks.

The Scot wasn’t the only player to make a positive impact from the bench, with Jadon Sancho and Luke Shaw also doing so, and McTominay’s goal marked the fourth game in a row that a United substitute has got on the scoresheet.

Speaking after the game, Ten Hag praised the energy and spirit of his squad, with his pleasure at the increase in tempo offered by the likes of Marcus Rashford and co clear.

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“I’m really happy,” Ten Hag said. “It tells you something about the spirit in the squad, they understand it’s not about 11 players, you have to do it, and sometimes it works like that.

“When you believe in it, the opponent is getting tired, the subs can have an impact when they have the right attitude, the focus to be direct, are fresh and score.”

The Dutchman added: “When you bring in McTominay you know he can arrive there but it’s not a typical scorer who will score 20 goals. But when you bring Rashford behind and a new combination on the left with Luke Shaw and Jadon Sancho, we create energy, they bring tempo on that wide left area, that’s good to see.”


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