Did Manchester United make a mistake in appointing Ralf Rangnick as interim manager?

Rangnick, who was recently appointed as the Austria national coach, has informed that he will not stay on in his consultancy role at United due to the demands of the national team job.

Ralf Rangnick in a file photo; Credit: Twitter@ManUtd
By Karthik Raman | May 29, 2022 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

Manchester United fans around the world were in for a surprise when Ralf Rangnick announced on Sunday that he will not stay in his consultancy role at Old Trafford. Rangnick replaced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at the beginning of December and was the interim manager for the rest of the season. He was then supposed to be in a consultancy position for the next two years. However, Rangnick, who was recently appointed as the Austria national coach, has informed that he will not stay on in his consultancy role at United due to the demands of the national team job.

After Rangnick confirmed the same in a press conference with Austria on Sunday, Manchester United released a statement of their own. “We would like to thank Ralf Rangnick for his efforts as interim manager over the past six months. By mutual agreement, Ralf will now focus solely on his new role as manager of the Austria national team and will not therefore be taking up a consultancy role at Old Trafford. We would like to wish Ralf the best of luck in this next chapter of his career,” the statement added.

READ MORE – Ralf Rangnick news: The 63-year-old confirmed as Austria manager

Was Ralf Rangnick’s appointment the right one?

Rangnick came to Old Trafford with a massive reputation. His ‘gegenpressing’ style has been praised by many coaches across Europe. For way too long, United have not been playing the pressing game well. Hence, Rangnick was expected to help the Red Devils add that additional skillset to their game. Many knew that he cannot make a team play with a high-pressing style after coming in the middle of the campaign. However, fans anticipated the club to at the very least build the groundwork in the pressing department for the future manager to benefit from.

It is safe to say that the pressing football did not really work at United. United were unable to press in a coordinated fashion for long, nor were they particularly effective after winning the ball higher up the pitch. Apart from the pressing, United’s attacking or defending game did neither improve under the German. When Solskjaer left the job, United were still in with a good chance to finish in the top four, but what transpired in the second half of the campaign has been nothing but disappointment. 

READ MORE – Who is new Man United manager Erik ten Hag? Know everything about him

Ralf Rangnick’s numbers at Manchester United

The German took charge of United in 29 games across all competitions. He won only 11 of those, drew 9 and lost a staggering nine times in the short span of time. If we break it down further, then in the Premier League, the Reds have played 24 times but have won only ten games, while drawing seven and losing seven. In the Champions League, he was in charge of three games. United drew two, lost once and did not win any of those matches. In the FA Cup, they played twice – won once, lost another.

FA Cup211
Champions League3021
Premier League241077

To be clear Rangnick was not brought to help United gain Champions League football. He was expected to have a bigger impact beyond the recently concluded season. The German was believed by many to make changes behind the scenes at the club and put a proper structure and plan in place. His consultancy role was expected to be the key part of his job. Rangnick has experience in bringing that structure in the past with some clubs, most notably RB Leipzig. As it turns out, he will not be fulfilling that task at United in the new era led by Erik ten Hag

It is unclear about the kind of impact the German has had behind the scenes at Old Trafford. It is unknown whether the United hierarchy took his ideas and suggestions into consideration, or how much they actually benefited the club. Since Rangnick will not be seeing out his consultancy role, the supporters are left with no choice but to judge him based on his interim reign. It is fair to say that the interim period has not been a happy memory for both Rangnick and the fans. United managed their worst season in the Premier League era, having finished sixth with 58 points and an alarming zero goal difference. Hence, it goes without saying that Ralf Rangnick’s time at Manchester United has been anything but successful.

Related Post