Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Man Utd ‘need open heart surgery’ to get back on track under Erik ten Hag, reckons interim boss Ralf Rangnick

RALF RANGNICK delivered a brutal diagnosis of Manchester United’s failing health, claiming: ‘It needs open heart surgery’.

Interim boss Rangnick will hand over the scalpel to Erik ten Hag to try and revive the flagging giant — who face Arsenal at lunchtime on Saturday.

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Manchester United interim boss Ralf Rangnick has claimed the club ‘needs open heart surgery’Credit: EPA
Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has been announced as Rangnick's successor at Old Trafford

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Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has been announced as Rangnick’s successor at Old TraffordCredit: EPA

But on another day of drama at Old Trafford, it was revealed:

Speaking for the first time since Ten Hag was confirmed as his successor, Rangnick did not hold back in his damning assessment of the ailing club.

The German said: “It’s just not enough to do some minor amendments, some little issues here and there and little cosmetic things.

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“In medicine you would say that this is an operation of the open heart.

“There are more things to be changed than some little things here and some minor things there — but this is the good thing.

“For me, if this happens and everyone has realised that this has to happen and if people want to work together, then it makes sense.”

United take on Arsenal at the Emirates in the race for the top four — but centre-back Maguire and midfielder Pogba will both be missing from the starting line-up.

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Rangnick told out-of-form skipper Maguire that he has been left out of the side after receiving a shocking bomb threat this week.

The German said: “It’s another bad sign of the crazy world we’re living in — I feel sorry for Harry he had that terrible experience.

“He knows everyone is behind him, the club, his team-mates. It’s sad enough that crazy things like that happen.”

French World Cup winner Pogba is out of contract this summer and Rangnick conceded on Friday he will never pull on a United shirt again after injuring his calf in the 4-0 hammering at Liverpool on Tuesday night.

Rangnick explained: “As it seems right now, he will not renew his contract.

“Maybe the club or Erik will not want to renew his contract. It’s most likely that he won’t be here any more next season.

“The doctor told me that it will take four weeks, minimum, for him to recover and the last game is the end of May.

“He’s a player who won the World Cup with France — he’s such a good player that he was a regular starter for a team like France.

“We all know what kind of potential he has and what kind of a good player he can be.

“He was quite like a few other players, struggling to get his best performance sustainably on the pitch for a team like Manchester United.

“This has not only been the case this season, or in the last couple of weeks. As far as I remember, it was also the case in earlier years.

“It’s difficult to say. If myself or other coaches knew it would be easier to change that… but I don’t know.”

Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo will be back against Arsenal after missing the Liverpool game on compassionate leave following the death of his baby twin boy.

Meanwhile, incoming Red Devils manager Ten Hag has already held a Zoom call with the squad ahead of starting his rebuilding work over the summer.

Red Devils duo Paul Pogba and Harry Maguire won't start against Arsenal on Saturday

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Red Devils duo Paul Pogba and Harry Maguire won’t start against Arsenal on SaturdayCredit: Getty

The Dutchman, who will join from Ajax when the season ends, told them the hard work starts now — and claimed they can still finish in the top four.

Ten Hag also warned them that he is judging them all from today’s match at the Emirates and for the remainder of the season.

The 52-year-old will keep an open dialogue with Rangnick about training performance and plans to dish out one-to-one training plans once he arrives.

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