Erik ten Hag will surpass Sir Alex Ferguson’s win rate at Manchester United with a victory against Tottenham live on Sky Sports this weekend – but is the stat misleading?
ESPN senior writer Gabriele Marcotti revealed the astonishing stat on social media after Ten Hag’s side secured their place in the FA Cup fourth round with a 2-0 win against Wigan on Monday.
Ten Hag’s record would reach 55 wins from 92 games if United beat Spurs this weekend, equating to 59.78 per cent – the highest win rate of any permanent manager in the club’s 134-year history.
United are currently languishing in eighth spot in the Premier League table, were dumped out of the Champions League at the group stage and crashed out of the Carabao Cup with a 3-0 defeat against Newcastle in the round of 16.
Sir Jim in the house
Sir Jim Ratcliffe is this weekend set to attend his first Manchester United
match since agreeing a partial takeover of the club.
The billionaire has agreed to buy a 25 per cent stake in the Premier League
outfit and, barring any late change in schedule, is due to attend Sunday’s match
against Tottenham at Old Trafford.
The deal is still awaiting ratification, but Ratcliffe and his team have wasted
no time getting to know the club as his INEOS group prepare to take
responsibility for footballing operations at United.
However, successes from last season appear to have boosted Ten Hag’s impressive win rate, when the club finished third in the Premier League, won the Carabao Cup and reached the FA Cup final.
Additionally, win rates can be skewed if teams rarely draw games and simply win or lose.
Is this the case with United under Ten Hag? The table below reveals that it very much is; Ten Hag has drawn only 11.96 per cent of his games in charge at United – the lowest ratio in the club’s history.
The Dutchman has also lost 28.26 per cent of his games – only David Moyes recorded a worse figure at the club since Sir Alex was at the helm.
If every win across all competitions was worth three points, and every draw was worth one, Ten Hag still holds firm among the elite with an average of 1.913 per game – only Sir Alex and Jose Mourinho have bettered that over the past 134 years.
However, as Marcotti put it in his post: “Sample size matters”. Ten Hag has only overseen 91 games at the helm and, as a result, his win rate is subject to greater fluctuations. For context, Sir Alex managed 1,500 games at the club.
So, Ten Hag could leapfrog Sir Alex with the club’s highest ever win rate on Sunday – but it comes with caveats.
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