Friday, August 12

Manchester United set to appoin Ralf Rangnick as interim manager in next 24 to 48 hours

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Ralf Rangnick, 63, is head of sports and development at Lokomotiv Moscow; Manchester United continue negotiations to secure German’s release; Michael Carrick is in temporary charge and is expected to lead the team against Chelsea on Sunday, live on Sky Sports

Negotiations between the clubs have been positive, with Rangnick currently manager of sports and development at the Russian club.

Rangnick, 63, will apply for a work permit once an agreement is reached, with the German expected to remain at United for two years beyond the season in a consultancy role.

He is currently in Moscow after attending his current club’s Europa League match against Lazio on Thursday.

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No specific game has been targeted for the opening game of Rangnick’s interim spell in charge at Old Trafford.

As it stands, Michael Carrick is still expected to be in charge for Sunday’s Premier League game at Chelsea, live on Sky Sports. United are then next in action against Arsenal in the league on November 2

Carrick was placed in temporary charge while United sought to appoint an interim boss following the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Sunday

The former Manchester United midfielder oversaw the 2-0 victory at Villarreal on Tuesday which secured the club’s progress to the last 16 of the Champions League.

Former Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde and former Lyon head coach Rudi Garcia had also been considered for the interim role.

United are planning to make a permanent appointment at the end of the season and Paris Saint-Germain boss Mauricio Pochettino is their first choice, with Ajax head coach Erik ten Hag also in their thinking.

What would Rangnick bring to Man Utd?

Rangnick, one of the most respected names in German football, oversaw the rise of the Red Bull group of clubs in Europe as head coach and sporting director of RB Leipzig and RB Salzburg.

He is credited with having influenced Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel and Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann among many others.

Rangnick has long been recognised as one of the first people behind the ‘gegenpress’, which translates as ‘counter-press’; the high-pressing, all-out running style adopted with great success by Klopp.

He has been linked with a move to the Premier League a number of times before, in both a managerial and sporting director role.

Rangnick describes it as his “football epiphany”. It was February 1983 and, aged 25, he was serving as player-manager of Viktoria Backnang, a small-town team in Germany’s sixth tier, when Valeriy Lobanovskiy’s Dynamo Kiev turned up for a mid-season friendly.

Lobanovskiy’s side were regarded as the strongest in the Soviet Union and it was no surprise they easily swatted their amateur opponents aside. But the manner in which they did it made a lasting impression on Rangnick, a bewildered figure in central midfield.

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