Manchester United interim boss Ralf Rangnick deserves plenty of praise for getting the best out of Diogo Dalot, with the player’s career going nowhere under predecessor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, claims one observer.
The Portuguese star appeared destined for the United scrapheap under Solskjaer, having signed in a £19m deal in 2018. Indeed, before this season, Dalot had only made 35 appearances for the Red Devils, and looked a likely candidate to leave.
And having made a season-long loan move to AC Milan in the 2020/21 season, it just looked a question of when, not if, Dalot would leave.
The player was also on Borussia Dortmund’s radar over the summer. Indeed, the Bundesliga side asked about Dalot during negotiations that took Jadon Sancho to Old Trafford.
Dalot, though, turned them down, wanting instead to give himself one last chance to make it at Old Trafford.
However, Aaron Wan-Bissaka was proving an unmovable object in the United side as the season got underway.
But once Rangnick replaced the Norwegian at the helm, Dalot’s career has enjoyed a significant rise.
Indeed, the 22-year-old now has 16 appearances to his name this season, including 12 in the Premier League.
Plaudits have been quick to come his way too, with Dalot winning the Man of the Match – albeit much to Rio Ferdinand’s annoyance – in the midweek win at Brentford.
And he was in fine form again in the win over West Ham on Saturday. Indeed, Dalot contributed four tackles, four clearances, two interceptions and three crosses as a late Marcus Rashford goal helped United to a vital win.
Diogo Dalot superb – and the stats prove it
Now Kevin Phillips thinks his form is a major plus for United – and reckons Rangnick deserves plenty of credit.
“He never got a chance under previous managers,” he told Football Insider.
“It’s great to see him getting a run over games and taking his chance under Rangnick.
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“He undoubtedly has qualities. You do not get a move to Manchester United unless you have. Now he has the right manager and an opportunity to showcase his abilities he can perform.
“He’s been superb and the stats prove it. He can be a big part of what Rangnick is trying to achieve at United. In Diogo Dalot, Rangnick has found a player who can give him everything he wants from right-back.
“Dalot looks full of confidence. Whatever he is doing, it is working. It is huge for United to have a player like Dalot coming to the fore in a period where they have by large been struggling.”
Man Utd come to Anthony Martial decision
United, meanwhile, have decided their preferred exit path for Anthony Martial but must first make a compromise in the deal, a report has claimed.
One of the main focuses of the Red Devils hierarchy in the January transfer window has been finding a new club for Martial. The forward wants out after falling way down the attacking pecking order this season.
And the situation turned sour last weekend when Rangnick said he refused to be included for the trip to Aston Villa.
Getting Martial, who denied that claim, out of the picture this month would be best for everyone involved.
However, United don’t want to strengthen a Premier League rival in the process. They’re currently battling for fourth place.
One of the other challengers for the final Champions League spot is Tottenham, who have expressed an interest.
The additional English side to be linked to Martial is financial superpower Newcastle. While they’re near the bottom of the table, none of their compatriots want to help them.
So according to TuttomercatoWeb, the Old Trafford chiefs want the 26-year-old to join Juventus.
Martial has already agreed to the move, but talks between the two clubs remain ongoing.