Ralf Rangnick lost his first game in charge of Manchester United on Monday in the 1-0 home loss to Wolves, prompting intense scrutiny from all across the country.
The performance wasn’t good enough, and the Red Devils have yet to significantly improve since Rangnick’s arrival. Express Sport has revealed the three issues the German must solve in order to avoid catastrophe.
The Cristiano conundrum
On paper, it seemed such a good signing.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner rejoining the club he made his name at after winning four league titles, four Champions League titles and a European Championship was surely destined for success.
But United’s attack is disjointed and they are not as electric as they were before Ronaldo. United fans have been left scratching their heads at just what has gone wrong at Old Trafford despite his eight goals in 16 Premier League games.
Soon to be 37, the Portuguese legend will be 38 when his contract ends.
And with United unlikely to sign another elite striker until his contract ends, they must find a way to make the most of his talents.
Van de Beek – a forgotten man?
Donny van de Beek desperately struggled for minutes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his plight was known to all United fans.
The midfielder had played just 61 minutes of Premier League football until the sacking of the Norwegian following the shock 4-1 loss to Watford in late November.
It was thought that Rangnick would give the Dutchman increased minutes, especially with the then-poor form of Fred, Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic.
But with the trio all performing well under the German boss, Van de Beek has played just seven minutes of Premier League football since Solskjaer’s departure.
The Dutchman either needs a sharp increase in minutes or either a move away now or a move away in the summer. If Rangnick wants a budget to improve other areas, he would be wise to cash in before January 31st.
Marcus Rashford’s troubles
What has happened to Rashford this season is anybody’s guess.
The winger looks completely bereft not only of confidence, but his usual composure and class this season.
Having hit double figures in his last three Premier League seasons, Rashford has taken what seems like a huge backwards step this campaign with just two goals.
And with Ronaldo, Bruno Fernandes, Jadon Sancho, Mason Greenwood and Edinson Cavani around him, that is more than enough service being provided for him to increase his output.
By comparison, Reece James and Ben Chilwell have scored more as defenders – whilst Gabriel, Ben Mee, Ezri Konsa and Trevor Chalobah are others who have scored the same amount.
Rashford must rediscover his form for United’s attack to get back to its best.