Ralf Rangnick has referenced Arsenal’s current blueprint as a cautionary tale for Manchester United players who wouldn’t be suited to Erik ten Hag’s style of football.
The 52-year-old Dutch tactician was officially confirmed as Man Utd’s new manager on Thursday morning, with the current Ajax boss set to take over from Rangnick at the end of this season.
It’s been a long-winded application process following Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s dismissal in November, but a permanent successor to the Norwegian has now been confirmed, with interim incumbent Rangnick set to move into an advisory role at the end of his temporary tenure.
But, until that happens, Rangnick remains the current Man Utd boss, and he has been speaking ahead of his side’s crucial Premier League six-pointer with fellow top-four aspirants Arsenal on Saturday lunchtime, in which he issued a thinly-veiled warning to some of the club’s struggling stars.
“[Arsenal] are very fresh, an extremely young team,” he told reporters.
“They lost their first three and they have drawn the right conclusions from what they experienced early on.
“They got rid of players that didn’t fit into their style.
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“They are always trying to press, but still vulnerable at the back. I like watching them but hopefully not against us tomorrow.”
One individual who may have played his last game is Paul Pogba, whose contract expires this summer.
Pogba was injured early in the 4-0 defeat to Liverpool earlier this week and Rangnick has now revealed the issue will likely keep him out past May: “The doctor said it will take four weeks minimum for him to recover.
“The last game is the end of May. I don’t think that it is very likely that he will be able to play again.”
The German coach also gave his thoughts on Ten Hag’s appointment, saying: “We don’t know each other, we haven’t met in person, but from what I’ve seen of him at Bayern Munich and Ajax I like his football.
“I’m positive that with a full pre-season and the chance to build and mould his own staff and team, I am sure we will see a different team and improvement on the pitch.
“I knew Erik was one of the candidates and I told them from what I had seen and been told from others that he would be a good choice. I believe he is a very good choice.”