The major changes Manchester United fans can expect from Ralf Rangnick

Ralf Rangnick is tipped to be the next Manchester United interim manager. Credit: PA

Blog by sports reporter Dan Salisbury-Jones.

When Ralf Rangnick sits down to analyse tapes of recent Manchester United matches, the German will likely run out of paper for his notes.

He loves high energy, high pressing football. United have been trying to move towards playing like that but they’ve been torn apart in doing do.

Thrashed at home by Liverpool, dominated by Man City and embarrassed at Watford.

There is a standout issue that you will hear discussed at length over the coming days and weeks.

Superstar striker Cristiano Ronaldo was signed to score goals, not press like a man possessed for five seconds when the team loses the ball. But that is what Rangnick’s ‘gegenpress’ requires him to do.

Jurgen Klopp is said to have been inspired by Ralf Rangnick. Credit: PA

To give you an idea, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was inspired by Rangnick, who has been described as the Godfather of the tactics he employs at Anfield.

Aptly, Ronaldo was pictured at training yesterday with a sort of pained smile on his face. Perhaps he already knew what was about to emerge later in the day.

But if it helps United consistently win football matches again, he will surely be happy to put his aging body through the pain.

He will have hated how the team has played in recent weeks.

Much of the criticism has been of former manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tactics, for some reason he couldn’t get the team working together as one. 

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Cristiano Ronaldo Credit: PA

United fans will be familiar with the ‘half-press’ – where players look like they’re trying to put pressure on opposition players but actually rarely win the ball.

Rangnick will expect that to end and I suspect that will be the most noticeable change over the coming weeks.

One of Solskjaer’s successes was lifting spirits and getting the most out of individuals who had struggled. Luke Shaw will forever be thankful to him.

He will be fondly remembered for bringing back the club’s identity, which probably puts them in a better place to implement Rangnick’s ideas.

Ralf Rangnick Credit: PA

In the short-term, as interim-manager the German will bring a structure and organisation. It’s unclear what his future role will be but it is likely to be something similar to consultant.

That will mean United will sign players that fit with his clear style of play and those that don’t get on board will be sold on.

In a previous interview Rangnick said: “There is a lot of space for a vision for United.” We’re about to find out what that looks like.