Manchester United officials have been so “impressed” with Ralf Rangnick that they have put their hunt for a new boss on hold, claims a report.
Rangnick was brought in initially as a stop-gap measure to steady the ship after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign turned sour. But the experienced German has gone about his work in such a manner that the United hierarchy are “interested to see what he can achieve between now and the end of the season”.
Mauricio Pochettino at Paris Saint-Germain, Leicester’s Brendan Rodgers and Erik Ten Hag at Ajax and are all on United’s shortlist as successors.
But The Sun report that United could turn to Rangnick in a permanent role after his successful start as interim boss. Originally the plan was to use Rangnick as a coach until the summer. And then move the former Schalke man into a two-year consultancy role.
In Rangnick’s first press conference, the 63-year-old said he may well be open to a longer term arrangement.
“The people who I have spoken with, so far, have been very clear that we are talking about a six-month role as manager currently. We have never spoken about anything after that in the summer,” Rangnick said in December.
“I am, of course, fully aware they are looking for a new manager. Maybe if they ask me, we will see.
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“Maybe, if they ask me my opinion as you said and everything goes well and I help develop the team. I might make the same recommendation as I did at Leipzig twice and say to them for me to stay on and continue working with me!”
Rangnick’s start has not been spectacular at Old Trafford. He has gained five wins from eight league games, losing just one. While United are into the FA Cup fourth round against Middlesbrough.
But United’s boardroom “have noted how he steadied the ship against a troubled backdrop”. And if the former Red Bull man can get United into the Champions League then he may well be handed the reins on a full-time basis.
As per the report, a two-year deal could be on the table for Rangnick, who has made some big decisions in his short time with the club.
Rangnick won’t accept egos
Most notably telling Cristiano Ronaldo to calm down the histrionics after having a strop after being subbed at Brentford.
“It’s a team sport. And it’s important for us that we get the most out of each game,” said the German.
“The team is more important than no matter who it is — Cristiano, Edinson Cavani, Bruno Fernandes or any other player. It’s about what is in the best interests of the team.
“I didn’t at all see or interpret that he was challenging me. He just showed maybe too emotionally that he was not happy to be replaced. I don’t blame him for that. But obviously any manager I think would wish it shouldn’t be too emotional. And also in front of the TV cameras.”
Incidentally, that switch worked with Marcus Rashford coming on to score a third in the capital.
Defensively United have also improved with four clean sheets in his 10 games at the helm.