Manchester United set to appoint Ralf Rangnick as interim manager until the end of the season

(Football news) Despite being one of the more obvious candidates to take over the interim role at Manchester United, fans were not optimistic about the possibility of Ralf Rangnick taking over the reins at Old Trafford. Why should they be? The Manchester United hierarchy had proved time and again that they couldn’t make the correct decisions in the football side of their ‘business’ and appointing Rangnick would have been too sensible a move. Moreover, the 63 year old German has the reputation of wanting to be in control of EVERYTHING, whereas Ed Woodward and Co. prefer managers who are not demanding and don’t ruffle any feathers.

Therefore, when the news broke out that Rangnick had come to an agreement with Manchester United, subject to Lokomotiv Moscow agreeing to let him depart from the role Head of Sports and Development, the reaction was a mixture of shock and elation. To add the cherry on top, Rangnick is expected to remain at the club for an initial two year period after the interim period in a consultancy role, which would provide invaluable guidance to ensure Manchester United can compete for the highest honours for the next few years.

As one of the most respected names in German football, Ralf Rangnick has been credited with ‘Gegenpressing’ where a team attempts to win back possession immediately after losing the ball. His sides tend to have high attacking output and are known for their pressing as well as zonal marking. Such is his influence that some of the most renowned football managers in the world today such as Jurgen Klopp, Thomas Tuchel, Julian Nagelsmann and Ralph Hasenhüttl follow his philosophy. In his career as a manager, ‘The Professor’ played an integral role in Hannover 96 being promoted to the Bundesliga after a 13 year absence, he was also responsible for RB Leipzig being promoted to Bundesliga.

His credentials as a director of football are equally impressive, under his leadership, RB Leipzig went on from being in the regional league (tier IV) to the Bundesliga, finishing runners-up in the 2016/17 season. The club also qualified for the Champions League under his reign, reaching the semi-finals in the 2019/20 season. At Manchester United, he is expected to go with a back four, either in a traditional 4-4-2, 4-4-2 (diamond) or a 4-3-3 lineup with attacking full backs and wingers supporting the central striker. This means that Jadon Sancho might finally thrive in Rangnick’s system whereas the likes of Aaron Wan Bissaka might be dropped for Diogo Dalot.

Most importantly, Rangnick’s number 1 priority will be to solve Manchester United’s defensive woes as the likes of Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw have underperformed this season. He will also aim to make Old Trafford a fortress again, making sure the team is difficult to defeat at home. As things stand, Manchester United have failed to win any of their last four home games, losing three of them. The Red Devils have the 13th best record in the Premier League at home so far and that desperately needs to improve if the team aims to qualify for the Champions League next season.

Ralf Rangnick will bring a whole new dimension at Manchester United, whether it is as an interim manager or a consultant. If the Old Trafford hierarchy do follow his advice and give him enough support, it’s only a matter of time before the club will finally compete against the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City for the Premier League and become a force to be reckoned with in the Champions League.

Also read: Bundesliga: Bayern take on relegation threatened Arminia as Dortmund breathe down their neck


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