Ralf Rangnick has a lot of work on his hands as Manchester United interim manager.
The German steps in on the back of a chaotic 3-2 win over Arsenal on Thursday night which, while keeping fans on the edge of their seats, again exposed United’s leaky defence.
United are expected to play with a higher line over the coming weeks and it will be intriguing to see how that works, especially with skipper Harry Maguire who doesn’t have enough pace.
They sat deep in the first-half against Arsenal before piling on more pressure in the opposition’s half after the break.
On Friday, Rangnick spoke to the media for the first time since taking over as interim manager – until the end of the season. He stated that we’ve been conceding too many goals so these are all areas for him to address in training.
“We are talking about six-and-a-half months, one third of the games, and we have agreed on a two-year advisory deal. If Manchester United contacts you for such a role you cannot turn it down,” Rangnick told reporters, as per The Irish Times.
“This is one of the biggest clubs, if not the biggest club, in the world. I am excited to work with the players we have here.
“I have watched the latest games, Watford, Chelsea, Arsenal, and I also watched on TV the games against Liverpool and Manchester City.
“I am well acquainted. It’s pretty obvious the team has an abundance of young, talented players and experienced players. The major target for me is to bring more balance into the team. Even yesterday we conceded two and needed three to win. We concede on average two a game and this is too much.
“I want to bring more balance and more control. Yesterday’s game, for me as the future coach, they are not the games you need. I will try and bring these outstanding, talented players away from their own goal.”
More balance and control are exactly what we want to see.
United have not consistently dominated games in such a long time and I am sure Rangnick’s methods will take time to learn. It’s a drastic change from when it looked like Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was carrying out the basics but not enough to take United where we need to be.
It sounds like Rangnick is hoping to make a good impression over the next two and a half years and refused to rule out the possibility of spending a longer spell at Old Trafford.
He added: “If we do well and we stabilise, I might even recommend that we keep working with me. This is all hypothetical, we cannot speak about that.”
Michael Carrick decided to depart the club after his short stint as caretaker manager.
Rangnick confirmed he spoke with Carrick about his decision and his wish was for the first-team coach to remain: “I had a conversation with Michael for more than an hour and tried to convince him, but he needed a break and I understand his decision.
“I am more than happy to work with the current staff because I need their expertise on the current squad. I will try and find one, two, maybe three people to help us.”