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Who Is Ralf Rangnick?

With a disappointing start to the Premier League this season for Manchester United, and losing 4-1 to Watford after losing 5-0 to Liverpool 4 weeks before, Manchester United’s staff decided to make an internal decision to relieve head coach Ole Gunnar Soljkær, or in other words, sack him. Without head coach Michael Carrick, a former Manchester United player was in charge of the team temporarily. Still, however, they started searching for a new head coach. What did this entirely mean? They needed to find someone who could take over for at least the next 6 months, and possibly longer. While it is hard to find a manager in the middle of the season, the board at Manchester United decided on Ralf Rangnick.

So, who is Ralf Rangnick? Many people consider Ralf the mentor of both Thomas Tuchel (Chelsea’s current coach) and Jurgën Klopp (Liverpool’s current coach). Ralf is considered the father of the Gegenpress, which is where the opposition, directly after losing the ball, attempts to win it back rather than falling back and regrouping on defense. The German manager was the first to publicize such tactics, resulting in him being coined as the “professor.” Rangnick prefers a 4 back, which entails 4 defenders, with midfielders and attackers playing above. His style of play is both balls and space-oriented on defense. While not only being the godfather of this style of play, he is also credited with building the youth development and player findings of the Red Bull company, which owns multiple soccer clubs that play in Europe's highest tier of competition, the Champions League. He also found players such as Erling Haaland as well as Robert Firmino, at TSG Hoffenheim. His role at Manchester United is deeper than a surface level of coaching, he will also be the main man in rebuilding the club’s system as a whole.

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