Ralf Rangnick reflects on Wolves defeat
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As many as eight Manchester United players reportedly want to leave the club as interim boss Ralf Rangnick struggles to handle the rising tensions in the dressing room. Rangnick was appointed just over a month ago, but performances have continued to be below-par under the German.
A defeat to Wolves on Monday was a serious set-back to their ambitions of finishing in the top four of the Premier League.
United now sit four points adrift of Arsenal and are in seventh place after Joao Moutinho’s late strike secured all three points for Wolves at Old Trafford.
Following the defeat, left-back Luke Shaw delivered a brutal analysis of his team’s performance and blasted some of his team-mates’ attitude.
The crisis is proving difficult to contain for Rangnick, who is set to move into an advisory role at the end of the season.
But with United struggling to live up to the lofty expectations of their star-studded squad, it appears some are no longer happy with life in Manchester.
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Express Sport understands that as many as eight players are actively trying to find a way out of Old Trafford.
Both Paul Pogba and Lingard are expected to leave on free transfers at the end of the season, but more could attempt to follow in their footsteps.
There is rising tensions between the separate groups in Rangnick’s squad, which is having a detrimental effect on performances.
Much of those tensions surround the role of superstar attacker Cristiano Ronaldo, who returned to United in the summer.
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Ronaldo’s undroppable status is thought to be proving a challenge to Harry Maguire, Edinson Cavani and Mason Greenwood.
And his influence over international team-mates in the squad as well as other Portuguese-speaking players is causing frustration in the ranks.
Though Rangnick has admitted that he believes the United squad is over-sized, he is thought to be reluctant to sanction departures with United competing on three fronts.
As well as the Premier League, United have reached the knockout stages of the Champions League, where they will play Atletico Madrid.
Their first outing in this season’s FA Cup will also come on Monday when they host Aston Villa, with Rangnick set to fully utilise his large squad.
Dean Henderson, Donny van de Beek, Juan Mata, Marcus Rashford and Jesse Lingard are all in line to start having struggled for game-time under both Rangnick and predecessor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
With the Champions League clash against Atletico not coming until after the end of the transfer window, it is unlikely that Rangnick will be willing to sanction many departures.
But with so many disaffected players in his squad, the interim United boss will have to change things quickly if the team’s situation is to improve.
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