Ralf Rangnick stepped into the ranks at Manchester United with his English dream finally coming true


You’ll have to stretch back to 1979 to trace the roots of working in English football being sown Ralf Rangnickof mind. The German registered at the University of Sussex and moved to non-League Southwick, during a period when direct consumption of the sport had become a part of life.

Rangnick was a regular at the Goldstone Ground to watch Brighton and form a bond with Arsenal upon his arrival at Highbury, even if being in the Clock End terrified him.

There were visits to Upton Park and White Hart Lane, with the 63-year-old still able to recount details from experiences far beyond the match itself; his chants, the weather, his emotions, his swaying, his sense of escapism.

And so Rangnick’s phone didn’t stop ping since Manchester United invited him as interim manager before acting as a consultant for ‘endlich!’ – Final – realizing a dream that seemed like a fantasy for decades.

The last few years have erased that distant element, with Germany having a dominant influence on the European game, both in style and in terms of managers.

But despite helping to shape and be appreciated by the country’s top managers such as Jurgen Klopp, Thomas Tuchel and Julian Nagelsmann, Rangnick remains a non-entity in the UK.

He has ambient noise and is seen as a suit – a villain – rather than a shapeshifter like the aforementioned trio.

Only Dan Ashworth seems to seriously recognize his worth, suggesting Rangnick manage West Bromwich Albion in 2012 before selecting him as a candidate to replace Roy Hodgson in the England squad, with Sam Allardyce narrowly winning. get more votes.

Rangnick’s construction at Hoffenheim, RB Leipzig and Salzburg spoke for itself, but in 2018 he was advised to hit the media to give an insight into his methods and present his presentation. presents a more realistic picture of his character in England.

It was clever and offers quickly began to rotate: Everton twice made a match but he was not convinced of the control he had, before turning down a caretaker offer from Chelsea .

It seemed like the opportunity Rangnick most wanted would never come, especially since top flight executives would knock on his door seeking his wisdom but never pursue it with a deal. more certain agreement.

Ralf Rangnick with Jurgen Klopp in 2005


“We used to joke that he was already working for English football,” said a colleague from Leipzig. “Premier League clubs have visited several times to listen to his ideas and see what they can take back. Sometimes they just take our players!

“He always believed in sharing information, but I think it went against him. Why marry him when you can absorb his ideas? ”

Rangnick is actually working in English football now and one of the teams that have tapped into his knowledge is United: Their director of football John Murtough has spent half a day at Cottaweg’s sprawling facilities. for training in successful recruiting, analytics, academia, and medical structures.

It was clear that grasping Rangnick’s blueprint wasn’t enough: who better than the man himself to deploy a modern, sustainable and smart spine for football activities?

United have stumbled like a drunk for an era, but now they have a cure for their nostalgia hangover through one of the sharpest minds in the game.

Several people close to Rangnick insist he will not walk into Old Trafford with his eyes closed and not snap at the shot because of his desperation to work in England. It was once revealed that the “godfather of gegenpressing” had studied United very closely since 2014 and could recount every mistake they had made since.

He has also detailed what he will do differently post-Ferguson in conversations with friends and has shared some of those excerpts in the media, focusing on his recruiting flaws. use.

For all his research and all his information, Rangnick would still be entering unfamiliar territory. He has never experienced anything close to United’s size, expectations, pressures and competing interests. A dressing room filled with superstars crowned with one of the greatest players ever made a stark contrast to his team ideals.

Before, Rangnick had never needed to turn a collection of expensive individuals into a unified whole. This has to happen quickly, with limited exercise time under extreme stress.

The reconfiguration of Hoffenheim, Salzburg and Leipzig are purely his projects operating with full backing, with little fuss or attention.

His authority and expertise was never questioned and Rangnick’s permission to, as one colleague put it, “build clubs in the shadows” had hitherto been removed from the global view.

United will be a huge departure from all that, where he will also report to the folks at Murtough and Darren Fletcher that essentially need to be coached by him.

Some in the Red Bull football empire believe that Everton would be a more appropriate project for Rangnick because they completely wasted Marcel Brands.

They insist that if he is truly heard and trusted by United, we will witness another art of reconstruction.

Rangnick is confident he knows what to expect and how to make sure the dream reality doesn’t turn into a nightmare. The only certainty is that, as always with United, it will be an unacceptable feat. Ralf Rangnick stepped into the ranks at Manchester United with his English dream finally coming true


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