Phone ban, dress code & punishments: Ten Hag’s strict code of conduct for Manchester United players

Erik ten Hag has totally changed the off-field culture at Manchester United since his arrival with a strict set of rules, including a phone ban.

WHAT HAPPENED? Upon the Dutchman’s appointment post-Ralf Rangnick, the 52-year-old immediately set about restructuring the club’s off-field approach, sensing that team togetherness and spirit had dissipated under the previous regime. He has laid down his own law and took perhaps the biggest step in stamping his authority by dropping Cristiano Ronaldo in November. There seems to be no-one above the rules he has set either: in-form Marcus Rashford was dropped against Wolves for being late to a team meeting, with Alejandro Garnacho suffering the same fate too.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: The rules themselves are pretty self-explanatory. The players must follow a strict dress code when representing the club, ensure they eat at a certain time at Carrington as well as follow a ban on mobile phone usage while on away trips. During their summer trip to Bangkok, Ten Hag was reportedly dismayed at how his players looked, wandering around their hotel in sliders and unmatching clothes, and therefore introduced the dress code.

AND WHAT’S MORE: Ten Hag’s also demanded that the team meeting room at Carrington be upgraded so that his players could sit and watch their 4-0 humiliation at the hands of Brentford. That cost the club around £200,000. Ten Hag would then punish his players by making them run eight-and-a-half miles, the distance that Brentford outran them on the day.