Manchester United

Ralf Rangnick dismisses reports of Man Utd player unrest & 'Ted Lasso' jibes

Scott Saunders
Ralf Rangnick remains defiant that his methods are working at Man Utd
Ralf Rangnick remains defiant that his methods are working at Man Utd / Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/GettyImages

Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has batted away suggestions that his players are finding his methods "old fashioned" - admitting that progress in the team's style of play has been obvious in recent fixtures.

United's performances for large chunks of their last two games against Middlesbrough and Burnley have been cohesive, though the failure to take chances in both games has led to each team earning results. Championship side Boro knocked United out of the FA Cup on penalties at Old Trafford last week, while the Clarets took a Premier League point in their game.

Friday morning saw reports emerge that United's players - who haven't appeared happy with any manager appointed since Sir Alex Ferguson's departure, by the looks - were disillusioned by the German's training methods.

Chris Armas, a recently recruited American coach who has worked with Rangnick previously, has reportedly been put in charge of sessions and earned himself the moniker 'Ted Lasso', too.

But Rangnick admitted ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash with Southampton that his players are happy, and making progress.

Asked his thoughts on the reports, he said: "Nothing to be honest. I haven't read any newspapers or read those articles. The way we have developed is obvious.

"How we played in the first half or 70 minutes at Burnley was very, very close to the game plan that we spoke about, and now it's about rewarding ourselves and getting the results that we deserve.

"I think the players have realised that there has been a good development in the last couple of weeks, both in and out of possession. They realised that we controlled the game [against Burnley] but, then again, if we concede a goal, we should just stick to the game plan - not all of a sudden lose shape or lose composure.

"This was the most harmful part of it. We just didn't stick to that game plan. All of a sudden, we didn't have the same positioning on the pitch, our two eights were too far outside, this is what we spoke about yesterday and the day before, when we analysed the Burnley game."

United are sixth in the table ahead of the next game with Southampton, who won at Spurs in midweek, and while only one point off fourth place West Ham with a game in hand, the likes of Arsenal and Tottenham themselves stand to go above them if they win their rearranged fixtures.

Results haven't been great for Rangnick recently, but he has called on his team to start putting their chances away to seal points.

"I was fully aware that this was a process and would take some time," he added. "The development is obvious, even in those two games. In football it is about getting the reward, the best result, and in those two games that was the only thing I could fault us on.

"I can only tell you what I have experienced in the last few weeks. I'd even say they were good had we won at Burnley. It is about improving in terms of performance and results. The team has developed, even the players realise themselves how much they have improved, especially in control of the game."

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