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‘Massive overreaction’ – Micah Richards questions the hype surrounding Ralf Rangnick’s appointment at Manchester United


Ralf Rangnick has taken charge of Manchester United on an interim basis (Picture: Getty)

Micah Richards has blasted fans and pundits for ‘jumping on the bandwagon’ to hail Ralf Rangnick as ‘the messiah’ and believes there has been a ‘massive overreaction’ to the German’s arrival at Manchester United.

Rangnick was officially unveiled as United’s interim head coach on Monday, with the 63-year-old taking over the reins from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer until the end of the season.

The ex-RB Leipzig and Hoffenheim boss, who leaves his role as head of sports and development at Lokomotiv Moscow, will take up a consultancy position for a further two years with the Red Devils from next summer.

Rangnick has been dubbed the ‘Godfather of Gegenpressing’ in his native Germany and the likes of Jurgen Klopp, Julian Nagelsmann and Thomas Tuchel view their fellow countryman as a major influence and mentor.

However, former Manchester City and England defender Richards has been left baffled by the hype and hysteria surrounding the appointment given the lack of silverware on Rangnick’s CV.

‘You know why I’m groaning? I’ll tell you why I’m groaning!’ Richards was asked after audibly moaning when the subject was raised on BBC Radio 5 Live’s The Monday Night Club.

‘Everyone’s making out like Rangnick is some sort of messiah like he’s come to this country and he’s got five league titles and a Champions League!

‘It’s a massive, massive overreaction.’

Richards believes the jury is out on Rangnick (Picture: Getty)

Asked whether he’s one of those doubting Rangnick due his lack of experience in the Premier League, Richards replied: ‘No, no, no! I’m definitely not that.

‘You’ve always got to give someone a chance and time.

‘I’m just talking about everyone jumping on the bandwagon like he’s the messiah.’

The German takes over United with the club sitting eighth in the Premier League (Picture: Getty)

Richards is also confused about the plan for Rangnick to step down in order for another manager to take charge at the end of the campaign.

‘Who is going to be the manager? We’re talking about Rangnick because he’s got the consultancy after the six months,’ he added.

‘I get him coming to Manchester United and I actually think it’s really good for United to have a clear plan as to what they want to do, the style of play, the players that they’ll want to attract if that’s what he wants to do. So I get that part.

‘But I don’t get the part that he’s coming in there for six months then someone is coming in as he takes a step back. I don’t get that.

‘Who is he going to get in there?’

Ronaldo ‘has to play’, according to Richards (Picture: Getty)

Cristiano Ronaldo has been widely criticised for a perceived lack of pressing this term and many have questioned how the Portuguese will fare with Rangnick’s approach.

However, Richards is adamant Ronaldo remains one of the first names on United’s team sheet given the ‘important’ goals he has scored since returning to Manchester.

‘Ronaldo has to play, I’m convinced that Ronaldo has to play,’ he said.

‘Yes, we talk about this gegenpress and everyone’s getting really excited and stuff like that.

‘But Ronaldo was the top scorer in Serie A, you’re not getting a Ronaldo who is over the hill. He was the top scorer in Serie A and he’s the top scorer for Manchester United now.

‘You have to find a way. He’s in great shape. Have you seen his physical shape? He’s in better shape than 99 per cent of the players in the Premier League.

‘To suggest that he can’t fit into this style is just nonsense.’

Richards went on: ‘I think he starts at Chelsea, 100 per cent. He probably starts at Manchester City too. We’re talking about Ronaldo!

‘When things are going badly at a club and because Ronaldo is so high profile, everyone wants to throw a little dig in there.

‘The proof is in the pudding, he’s a top goalscorer. And not just that, it’s the important goals.

‘Manchester United wouldn’t even be in the Champions League anymore if it wasn’t for Ronaldo.’


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