United have lost three of their opening five games for the first time in Premier League history and they face a tough task to open their Champions League campaign on Wednesday away to Bayern Munich.
Ten Hag has been shielded from criticism in the opening weeks of the campaign as fans focused their anger on a number of off-field problems.
Despite fans’ desire to get rid of him, the Glazer family appear to have put the club’s sale process on hold.
Brazilian striker Anthony has been given time off to fight domestic violence allegations made by his ex-girlfriend.
Meanwhile, United decided last month that Mason Greenwood has no future at Old Trafford despite the 21-year-old being cleared of abuse charges.
Ten Hag was credited with helping United return to the Champions League, finishing third in the Premier League last season and ending a six-year trophy drought by winning the League Cup.
However, Having replaced newly-acquired Rasmus Høilund midway through the second half of Saturday’s 3-1 win over Brighton, he was the target of booing.
The Dutch coach tried to turn the moment into a positive show of support for Højlund, who made his debut after transferring from Atalanta for 64 million pounds ($79 million).
The Dane has only recently returned to action and Ten Hag could not afford to lose another key player by forcing him to play 90 minutes too early.
But United’s bet that the 20-year-old will benefit in the long term could backfire if they lose Harri Kane to Germany.
Despite their need for a striker, United have failed to test Tottenham’s resolve to get the England captain, who instead moved to Bayern for €100m ($110m, £86m).
Kane has already scored four goals in four starts.Højlund has yet to score a single goal for United.
– Sancho disciplined –
Adding to United’s problems in attack is the fact that striker Jaydon Sancho is absent from the first team due to a spat with the manager.
Sancho, who moved from Borussia Dortmund for £73m just two years ago, has been forced to train on his own after claiming he was made a scapegoat when Ten Hag criticized his poor results in training.
Ten Hag’s discipline has been touted as part of his success in his first season, as even Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcus Rashford were not given special treatment.
The United boss is yet to face the wrath of fans for his latest position as Sancho has failed to justify his price.
But the decision has increased the pressure on Ten Hag to lift spirits at the club by improving results on the pitch.
With United already nine points behind local rivals Manchester City in the Premier League, the impact on the Champions League becomes even more vital to the success or failure of Ten Hag’s second season.
It’s all about character, Ten Hag said ahead of his return to Munich, where he coached the Bayern B team from 2013 to 2015.
Now we have to see how strong we are, how cohesive the team is and which players show character and lead the team.