Ralf Rangnick has praised Cristiano Ronaldo for his work off the ball as the German coach’s reign at Manchester United started with a 1-0 win against Crystal Palace.
A goal from Fred in the second half of the clash at Old Trafford was enough to see the Red Devils secure the three points in the first match under the new interim boss.
Rangnick was pleased with the way they played, and highlighted Ronaldo’s effort as United got their first taste of the new pressing system the manager is looking to implement.
What did Rangnick say after his first Manchester United win?
“I am very happy with the way the team performed, especially the first half-hour, with the pressing, it was exceptional. The only thing missing was the 1-0 or 2-0,” he told BBC Match of the Day.
“The way we defended, we had control of the whole game, the clean sheet was the most important part.
“These are the things we must improve. We need to keep clean sheets. With just the one training session, I was really impressed. We did much better than expected.
“We always tried to be on the front foot. We were never not apart from maybe the last five minutes. At all other times we were trying to keep them away from our goal.
“We wanted to play with two strikers, especially in the central position. By the way, Cristiano Ronaldo’s work off the ball, chapeau.”
What did Manchester United players think of Rangnick’s style?
Much has been made of the playing style the former RB Leipzig and Hoffenheim coach is expected to introduce at Old Trafford, with the team expected to press teams high up the pitch.
United star Bruno Fernandes was delighted with the start they had against Palace as they closed their opponents down and played at a high tempo.
“It depends on the game,” he told Premier League Productions.
“Sometimes you have to press a little bit more, sometimes you have to press less and everyone knows that it’s one of the things that the manager wants from us. More pressure, to be more aggressive. We tried to do it [today].
“I think the first 25 minutes from us was unbelievable, great tempo and we don’t give any space to them. We recovered a lot of balls high up the pitch. We could have scored many times in the first half I think, at least three times we could do a little more.
“But we got the three points and that’s the most important thing.”
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