Ralf Rangnick reviews Everton defeat
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Manchester United’s ambitions of finishing in the top four were dealt another fatal blow after their dismal defeat at Everton. And the 1-0 loss also puts the Red Devils in danger of proving a Roy Keane prediction about the character of their squad right yet again.
While results picked up at the start of Ralf Rangnick’s reign as interim manager, United have taken a step back in recent weeks. They now sit seventh in the Premier League table, six points off Tottenham who currently occupy the final Champions League qualification place.
The defeat at Goodison Park only served to showcase the worst of the current iteration of United, with the visitors once again putting in a poor showing. Everton’s goal came when Anthony Gordon was given the time to line up a shot on the edge of the box, which defelected off Harry Maguire and past David de Gea.
And it suggested that once again, the United players are slipping into the bad habits that cost the jobs of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Jose Mourinho. Keane predicted after Solskjaer’s sacking that the Red Devils’ squad would not ‘change their spots’ after throwing the Norwegian “under the bus”.
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“They’re not working as hard as the three teams at the top. United players have stopped running the last couple of months. It’s difficult for players when a manager’s lost his job, they have to take responsibility, but these players don’t,” he told Sky Sports in November.
“Leopards don’t change their spots. Man United have talented players, particularly in possession, but the game is also about when you’re out of possession. These players don’t run, they don’t sprint, they don’t close down, they don’t work as a team. They’re almost just depending on their talent, which is coming up short as well.
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“I don’t know what’s going on on the training pitch, but the signs are that this United group don’t work hard enough. They don’t seem like good enough lads to me in terms of leadership. I keep saying it, but that’s what you need in difficult spells. These lads have done what I predicted and they’ve thrown him under the bus, that’s what they do.”
Rangnick’s reign appears to be going exactly the same way as Solskjaer’s, with United again abject against the relegation threatened Toffees. With the Red Devils again proving Keane right, it leaves their next permanent manager with even more work to do to restore the giants to their former glory.
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