Manchester United interim boss Ralf Rangnick is reportedly stunned by how far the Red Devils have fallen and believes two major issues are preventing him from turning the club around.
The German coach took over from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer towards the end of 2021 in the hope of kickstarting United’s season after a poor run of form under the popular Norwegian.
However, after initially doing well under Rangnick, the Red Devils were lucky to come with a draw at Newcastle. They then deservedly lost at home to Wolves after a dire display.
That defeat left them seventh in the table. However, they are only four points off the final Champions League spot.
But since the shock loss to Wolves, reports have emerged of unhappiness in the Old Trafford camp. And now that Daily Mail states that Rangnick has now realised that the job is far tougher than he expected.
Sources close to the former RB Leipzig chief state he is ‘shocked’ at how far United have fallen.
The situation is so bad that Rangnick now feels it will take a massive effort to land a top-four spot. That was known to be the minimum expectation when Solskjaer was shown the door.
United also need to progress in the FA Cup against Villa on Monday night to stop the atmosphere becoming toxic.
A look at the managers who have bowed out after FA Cup defeats
Two major issues for Rangnick
The Mail adds that there are also two big problems that Rangnick has encountered. Those issues are currently stopping him from transforming the team.
The first is the defence, with the German concerned that his high-pressing style is not suited to the back players currently at his disposal. The loss of form of Harry Maguire has only made the problem worse.
At this best, the Red Devils skipper likes to play on the front foot and pinch possession to get United back on the attack. However, his confidence appears to be at rock bottom.
The other issue that Rangnick and his staff have identified is a lack of physical conditioning. The first-team squad’s fitness levels are someway below what would normally be expected. To that end, Rangnick’s desire to implement a pressing game has been severely hampered.
Fitness is not really something that can be worked on mid-season, especially when fixtures are being crammed in.
United will be hoping to get back to winning ways against Steven Gerrard’s Villa on Monday night.
READ MORE: Man Utd disrupt Prem rivals as defensive star seals Serie A switch with key clause absent