Ralf Rangnick’s era at Manchester United ended with little glory. Now Bruno Fernandes protects him and is self-critical.
1.45 points per game – Ralf Rangnick’s cut at Manchester United, England’s record champions, was terrifying. The German took over on an interim basis after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was kicked out and could not stop the downward spiral.
On the contrary! Under his leadership, Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. missed the Champions League ranks. Rangnick was chased from the court, his analyzes and well-intentioned advice for the urgently needed squad change left behind.
In the meantime, Rangnick is known to be the ÖFB team boss and was able to convince with refreshing attacking football in the first Nations League appearances. United are still struggling – despite another summer of staggering transfer spending.
Playmaker Bruno Fernandes is now open about Rangnick in an interview. Surprising: The Portuguese defends his ex-coach, and he and his teammates are responsible. Fernandes: “Ralf came up with his idea of playing with intensity and pressing like he was used to in Germany. But that didn’t quite work out for us because the atmosphere between everyone involved was very depressed and self-confidence wasn’t very high,” he says in “Athletic”.
That means too little team spirit to put Rangnick football into practice. “It has nothing to do with Ralf. He tried his best,” he confirms again. “He’s a good manager with good ideas, but it didn’t suit everyone. That’s because Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team was built around his ideas.”
Solskjaer’s idea not compatible with Rangnick
Under Solskjaer, United often acted as a unit, but acted in fundamentally different ways to the Rangnick approach. Deep, compact defence, quick counterattacks – that’s how the “Red Devils” often performed under the Norwegian’s leadership. The record champions gradually became a counter-attacking team, playing outsider football, so to speak. The record was strong against the big teams. But United found it difficult to break up deep opponents. After the successful era of coaching legend Sir Alex Ferguson, the fans want to see exciting attacking football. A circumstance that eventually became Solskjaer’s undoing, together with the form curve pointing downwards.