Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick must change his tactics following a poor start to life at Old Trafford, according to one pundit.
United raised eyebrows when bringing in the 63-year-old German until the end of the season. While he made his name impressively by putting RB Leipzig and RB Salzburg on the map, observers such as Paul Merson had their doubts before he arrived.
And Merson’s prediction that Rangnick would not enjoy as smooth a ride at United as some had claimed, has transpired.
The manager has led United to three wins from six games, but they have often been unconvincing displays.
The problems worsened for the Red Devils with Monday’s 1-0 defeat to Wolves, the first of Rangnick’s Old Trafford tenure. Reports in December revealed concerns over the manager’s 4-2-2-2 system.
More recently, the Daily Mirror has claimed that United’s players feel underwhelmed by their coach’s tactics. Speaking to ESPN FC, Don Hutchinson insisted that Rangnick must change his formation.
Asked if the German can stick to his preferred tactics, Hutchinson said: “He can’t, surely he can’t.
“So the percentage chance of that is absolutely zilch. He can’t stick with this system. No way.”
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The Daily Mirror‘s report adds that cliques have emerged in the dressing room which is not helping the situation.
What’s more, 11 players – including Donny van de Beek and Jesse Lingard – reportedly want to leave in January.
As well as the tactics and dressing room mood, Gary Neville recently picked out the body language of some of the players as an issue at United.
In fact, he labelled the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes “whingebags”.
Asked whether Ronaldo’s signing was a mistake, Hutchinson pointed to England midfield duo Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice as two better signings for the long-term than the Portugal forward.
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“I would have thought that money would have been better off spent signing someone like Declan Rice or Jude Bellingham,”Hutchinson added.
“I think those are the guys that would improve Man Utd’s midfield, I don’t think it’s a mistake signing Ronaldo, because without him they wouldn’t even be in the last-16 of the Champions League.
“[Rice] would [be a lot more money] but you’re going to get Declan Rice for eight years, 10 years.
“What are you going to get out of Ronaldo? You’re going to get one season, are his legs still going to be there next season?
“He can still do a job, Ronaldo, but I think when you look at that engine room, people like Bellingham and Declan Rice, they’re going to be the future superstars.”
United return to action on Monday when facing Aston Villa in the FA Cup.