DONNY VAN DE BEEK is set for a permanent Manchester United exit if he can’t improve his performances, boss Erik ten Hag has warned.
The Dutchman has started the Red Devils‘ last three matches in all competitions – failing to impress in any of them.
Van de Beek spent the second half of last season on loan at Everton in a bid to find form in the Premier League.
But Ten Hag, under whom Van de Beek played the best football of his career at Ajax, has ruled out another temporary switch.
He said: “I don’t think the loan makes sense.
“It’s either he fights and proves himself in this environment or he goes, but for me, there is still a way for him.
“It it’s not going to be easy for him because the competition there is really strong.”
Van de Beek, 25, has found himself stuck behind Bruno Fernandes in the pecking order during his time at Old Trafford.
And the summer addition of Christian Eriksen didn’t do anything to boost his chances.
Addressing criticism of Van de Beek’s recent displays, Ten Hag added: “I see the opinion but when I watch back the performance in Sociedad and also Villa, he is there in the positions I expect a No10 has to do.
“And nowadays, it is difficult for a No 10 to really show themselves.
“We have the romantic idea of the No 10 as a playmaker giving the final passes, that they have to play in the middle of the park.
“But it is difficult there because nowadays all the good teams close the middle of the park, so it is really difficult to get a lot of ball touches.
“So that is also not the player who Donny van de Beek is but what he is doing well is his positioning and his movement together with the strikers, especially with the No9, that combination.
“He is really good in positioning and anticipation in and out of possession, he did that to my satisfaction in the last games.
“But I have seen he is not on the scoring list, he is not on the assist list and he can do better. He is still not there on his limits, I have seen him better in the past, definitely.
“But I think positioning wise he is acting quite well. But he has to make that step with pace and intensity.”
Van de Beek has played 57 times for Man United, scoring two goals and laying on a pair of assists.
Seven of his outings have come this term, with a muscular injury having ruled him out for much of the campaign.
He suffered World Cup heartache this week, with Dutch boss Louis van Gaal leaving him out of his 26-man squad for Qatar.