On The Ball

Time for Ralf Rangnick to bite the bullet and let Man United's misfits go

Manchester United's German interim manager Ralf Rangnick after their English Premier League defeat by Wolverhampton Wanderers on Jan 3, 2022. PHOTO: AFP
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It was more Manchester Disunited than Manchester United. An incoherent, disjointed performance in defeat by Wolves showed precious little evidence they had bought into Ralf Rangnick's thinking about pressing and tactics. Luke Shaw reflected afterwards that he didn't feel United were all there together. The left-back was not talking literally but fast forward to the end of the summer transfer window and he will be correct. They won't all be together.

If 2022 is bound to be a time of change at Old Trafford, with a new permanent manager, it is set to be the year of the clear-out. In part, that is necessary. United have a bloated, imbalanced squad, partly because of poor planning. In part, it may be because of choice: Some could be surplus to requirements if the next regime signs players in their positions. And in part, it could entail United losing players they want to keep.

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