Jurgen Klopp insists Ralf Rangnick deserves credit taking charge of a difficult situation at Manchester United mid season – and admits he feels for his fellow German and close friend.
Rangnick’s interim spell in charge of the Red Devils has not gone as well as many expected. Picking up the reigns from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in early December, United’s multi-talented squad continues to under-perform. Known as the Godfather of the Gengenpress, many expected Rangnick to make positive changes at Old Trafford.
However, like many of his predecessors, he has found the going tough at Old Trafford. as things stand, Man Utd are likely to miss out on a Champions League spot. They currently trail fourth-placed Arsenal by six points, having played a game more.
Indeed, Saturday’s costly 3-1 defeat at Emirates Stadium appears to have signaled the end of their chances. You can see the player ratings from the game right here.
It all means Rangnick’s spell in caretaker charge will not live long in the memory. It also signals just how huge a job Erik ten Hag faces when he takes over as manager this summer.
To underline this, Rangnick admits Manchester United’s squad needs ‘open-heart surgery’ in a bid to get stronger.
United’s bad week may have ended in a loss at Arsenal. However, the early damage was done on Tuesday night as Klopp’s Liverpool put them to the sword in a 4-0 success.
Klopp knew Rangnick had tough job
Now Klopp has expressed sympathy for Rangnick. Furthermore, he reckons many of the problems are inherent ones and things that cannot be solved with a quick fix.
I have told Sky Sports: “In this situation and moment it was really difficult for United to come here. It is one of those situations where it’s not going well and then you look at the schedule and its like ‘oh my god, we have to go there’. So it was not a perfect set-up for them. Yes we are in a good moment, so it was really difficult for them.
“I can imagine it is really hard. I obviously know Ralf Rangnick and I know how it sounds when the Liverpool manager says I feel for Ralf Rangnick, but it is like that because I understand it is really difficult.”
United will be looking for future revenge
Having beaten them 5-0 earlier in the season, Liverpool enjoyed an unprecedented ‘9-0 aggregate’ triumph over United this season.
Despite that, Klopp resisted the opportunity to reveal in that fact earlier this week.
The Reds boss though knows, no matter their current advantage, United will be out to exact revenge in the future.
I have added: “[From Rangnick’s point of view] We go to Liverpool, who are playing really good, and okay we actually have no defensive midfielders. That’s not good news. It is not cool but that’s the situation they are in.
“But I am not interested in gulfs or distances between us and them. I know we’ll go there next year and they’ll have the results from last year in their mind and it makes it more difficult for us when we arrive.”
Rangnick’s time in charge of United has been beset by problems, which some often blame on the big egos in the dressing room.
Now Paul Scholes, citing Jesse Lingard, has given an insight into the problems that exist among United’s players.