Manchester United assistant coach Steve McClaren is having a growing influence at Old Trafford and was key in calling off a controversial move for Marko Arnautovic, according to transfer insider Dean Jones.
Erik ten Hag was appointed as the new manager of the Red Devils this summer and brought McClaren in as part of his backroom staff.
What is the latest news from Old Trafford?
Sunday saw United’s Premier League season get off to the worst possible start as they were beaten 2-1 by Brighton in front of their own supporters.
It was not the beginning that Ten Hag will have hoped for and the same on-field problems of last year had clearly not been expelled over the summer.
The mood of fans was not helped when, in the following days, it was reported that Manchester United wanted to sign former Stoke City and West Ham striker Arnautovic, only to pull out after a £7.6 million bid was rejected by Bologna and a fierce backlash from fans was felt.
The Red Devils are eager to bring in greater competition in attack and have now moved their attention onto PSV Eindhoven’s Cody Gakpo.
What has Jones said about McClaren?
The transfer insider says that the past week has seen the former England manager having a greater influence on decision-making behind the scenes.
He also says that McClaren was key in getting the bid for Arnautovic called off.
Jones told GIVEMESPORT: “There’s been some interesting changes at United over the past week or so. One of the things is that it seems that Steve McClaren is having a little bit more say now behind the scenes, in terms of how they quickly fix the situations that need sorting. I’m told that he was one of the voices behind calling off the Arnautovic bid. “
What will McClaren add to United this season?
There were a few eyebrows raised when it was announced McClaren would be joining the coaching set-up, but given his affinity with Dutch football, it was perhaps not too big a shock that Ten Hag brought him in.
Stewart Downing played under him during his spell as Middlesbrough’s manager and backed him to whip United into shape.
“The one thing I will say about McClaren is that he’s a very good on-field coach, and I think that team does need coaching a little bit,” Downing said, via Daily Star, back in June.
“When I watch United they’re so ill-disciplined, and [McClaren] is really good at organising the team and getting them how he wants them to play, and I’m sure he and Ten Hag have got the same sort of ideas.”