‘Three or four new players isn’t enough. We need to improve in ALL areas’: Ralf Rangnick gives a damning verdict on Man United’s lack of ‘aggressive DNA’, an unbalanced team and botched top-four bid
- Ralf Rangnick has given his assessment of Manchester United’s current situation
- The interim head coach is set to move upstairs at Old Trafford into a director role
- The German is trying to help United secure a top four finish this season
- However, he insists that there is a need for a complete overhaul within the squad
Ralf Rangnick insists Manchester United are in need of a drastic squad overhaul if they want to compete at the top of the Premier League once again.
The German took interim charge of the team in December following the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, and United are still in the midst of a four-way tussle for the final Champions League spot with Arsenal, Tottenham and West Ham.
Rangnick is set to move upstairs at Old Trafford when his stint in the dugout comes to an end next month, and he admits he has already alerted the board to individuals he believes would improve their fortunes on the pitch.
Manchester United are in need of a complete overhaul of their squad, says Ralf Rangnick
However, the 63-year-old has warned that it will take more than a couple of new faces to lift the side back into competition for the Premier League title, a position the Red Devils have not found themselves in ever since Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013.
‘There might be a couple of players – and I have already named those players to the board – that independent from formation, from style of football, and independent from a new manager, that could be of interest for a club like United,’ he said in an interview with Sky Sports.
‘But in general, if you look at the size of the way the team needs to be rebuilt, I mean, it’s not enough to bring in three or four new players.
The German interim head coach believes the club need more than three or four new faces
‘It will be more, bearing in mind how many players will no longer be here with the contracts running out.’
Paul Pogba is one of four players whose United contract is set to expire at the end of the current campaign. Edinson Cavani, Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata also have their terms ending this June and look set to leave the club alongside the Frenchman.
Nemanja Matic has also announced that this will be his final season at Old Trafford. There is also uncertainty over the futures of Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial, along with a host of other fringe players.
There are a nucleus of players at the club which the new manager – expected to be Ajax’s Erik ten Hag – can form a team around, with David de Gea and Bruno Fernandes among the club’s core assets.
But until the confirmation of the Dutchman, Ranginick insists it is difficult for any of the much-needed work on first-team personnel to start.
‘It’s important to know who will be the new manager, because to start the recruitment process, to find the best possible players only makes sense if you know who will be the manager and how does he want to play,’ he said.
‘I think apart from the goalkeeping, we need to make sure that we improve the squad in all areas.
Rangnick says their goalkeeping department is the only area that needs no improvement
‘To bring in players who really help the team to get better – again, it’s about the profile. What kind of players do we need in order to play whichever kind of football we want to play?’
Rangnick also appeared to suggest his current crop of United stars are too soft, pointing to a lack of ‘aggressive’ traits in the DNA of his players, something he believes is costing them in their pursuit of a Champions League place.
‘It’s important that you have players who have that in their DNA, who are in a way naturally born aggressive and this is something that is difficult to change,’ he added. ‘But as I said, this is something for the future.’
United face Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday night, a crucial game for both sides with Liverpool still in contention for an unprecedented quadruple and United still looking to secure fourth.
Rangnick’s side are currently fifth, three points behind Tottenham in fourth. They are level on points with Arsenal, but Mikel Arteta’s side have a game in hand on them.
United meet Arsenal at the Emirates later this month, in what could prove a pivotal fixture in deciding the victors in the race for fourth.
Rangnick also suggested United’s stars are too soft, and lack an aggressive trait in their DNA
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