Who is Ralf Rangnick? Man Utd's interim boss in profile
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Ralf Rangnick talked about taking a director of football role at Manchester United in 2019, reports say. The 63-year-old is poised to become the club’s interim manager in the wake of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s sacking. And he’ll be staying at Old Trafford after that, too.
United sacked Solskjaer last weekend, less than 24 hours after a heavy 4-1 defeat away at Watford.
The board originally had no plans to axe the Norwegian. But the manner of the defeat at Vicarage Road saw that stance change, with the 48-year-old then bowing out with his head held high.
Now, Rangnick is poised to take over.
United were linked with a host of different managers, holding positive talks with Rudi Garcia and Ernesto Valverde, in the aftermath of Solskjaer’s departure.
But John Murtough has been sold on Rangnick, who is poised to sign a six-month contract at the club.
The German has also been told he’ll be given a two-year role as a consultant, too, when his time in charge comes to an end.
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And GQ Magazine claim that, in 2019, Rangnick talked with a United staff member about possibly becoming a sporting director in the future.
It’s claimed the staff member grilled the 63-year-old about RB Leipzig’s academy and coaching set-up, having been impressed by his work at the Red Bull Arena.
And when asked if he’d become a sporting director at Old Trafford one day, he supposedly said: “If any club wanted to speak to me, the question would have to be: ‘Can I be somebody who can influence areas of development across the whole club?’
“Otherwise, you are only getting half of what I am capable of.”
United are now poised to take on Rangnick’s pressing style.
The German likes young players, which means the likes of Jadon Sancho, Mason Greenwood, Scott McTominay and Amad could all benefit.
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And it’ll be interesting to see how Rangnick accommodates Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ronaldo has been a shining light for United this season, scoring 10 goals since his Hollywood homecoming from Juventus.
But his pressing stats are poor and Rangnick may find himself in a fight to get the best from the 36-year-old.
United are continuing talks with Lokomotiv Moscow, Rangnick’s current club, as they look to bring him in the door.
Yet Michael Carrick will be in the dugout for Sunday’s match with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, having masterminded a 2-0 win over Villarreal in midweek.
Bundesliga expert Kevin Hatchard has spoken to talkSPORT about Rangnick.
And he feels he could give the United squad a new lease of life.
“This was a guy who was very much a pioneer when he was bringing his vision of pressing and counter-pressing, that very quick vertical style,” said Hatchard.
“There’s a lot of coaches who have taken a leaf out of his book – Thomas Tuchel is one of those.
“Their paths crossed very early on in Tuchel’s coaching career and, had it not been for his time with Rangnick, he may not have taken up coaching in the way that he did.
“Jurgen Klopp I think has amended some of the ideas for his heavy metal football.
“This is a guy who basically built the Red Bull football operation from scratch in Leipzig.
“Yes, he’s had a lot of money to play with, but you still have to do it and that is a very slick operation.”
Rangnick is the latest manager to be given the United job.
David Moyes lasted just 10 months after replacing Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013, with Ryan Giggs then seeing out the season.
Louis van Gaal was hired in 2014 but, despite winning the FA Cup two years later, lost his job.
Jose Mourinho took charge in the summer of 2016 yet lasted two-and-a-half years before being axed.
And Solskjaer was in the role until last weekend, with the defeat to Watford ultimately proving fatal.
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