Manchester United captain Harry Maguire has admitted that Ralf Rangnick is not at all to blame for the Red Devils’ poor form – insisting that the players must take the brunt of the criticism instead after a poor run of results.
United lost their first game in nine – and the first of Rangnick’s tenure – against Wolves on January 3, with Joao Moutinho’s late winner being the difference between the two sides.
On paper, that is a decent run of fixtures for a club that was in freefall under former boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Yet it is the manner of the performances under Rangnick which has given fans much to worry about over their poor league position.
The Old Trafford outfit scraped to a draw against lowly Newcastle, relied on a late penalty to beat bottom-side Norwich and again relied on a late goal by Fred to beat Crystal Palace.
However, Maguire has stated that the players are to blame for their poor form, demanding that fans should go easy on their new boss.
“He (Rangnick) has made an impact – we win together and lose together,” Maguire said.
“The manager is there to set us up tactically, which we absolutely take on board.
“His detail and preparation is enormous. We’ve got full respect and trust in his methods.
“Yes, it’s difficult when the coaching team changes mid-season, like it does at loads of clubs. But I will say it again: it’s down to us as players.
“The quality and leaders are in the team to ensure we finish the season in the top four and with a trophy.”
The England international is adamant that the buck stops with the squad that Rangnick inherited from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer last month.
The club currently sit in seventh, 22 points behind rivals Manchester City and 11 points behind Liverpool.
And Maguire acknowledges that record is something United fans will not be proud of.
The £80million signing continued: “The most important thing for us is the fans. We are letting them down.
“The support at Old Trafford and at away games is still unbelievable.
“United have a history of coming out fighting – and that’s exactly what we will do. We have to!
“This team finished second last year and we now have a bigger and better squad, so we have to show the right attitude.”