Football

Manchester United’s interim manager says incoming boss Ralf Rangnick did not have hand in lineup vs. Chelsea

30 Nov 2021 | 07:11

LONDON — Michael Carrick says incoming head coach Ralf Rangnick had no input on his Manchester United side after a much changed XI earned a draw away to Premier League leaders Chelsea on Sunday.

Cristiano Ronaldo was the most notable absentee of a side bearing four changes from that which beat Villarreal in midweek with goalscorer Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford leading the line with Bruno Fernandes in behind. Though Chelsea’s domination of possession soon forced United backward there was a notable commitment from the visitors to pressurise the Blues high up the pitch.

With Rangnick’s appointment until the end of the season all but complete — the club hierarchy are still working to secure a work permit for the German — it was only natural that some would see his hand in this change of approach from Carrick. Indeed former Manchester United defender Gary Neville suggested on Twitter that Rangnick may even have picked the team.

It was a suggestion that was emphatically rejected by Carrick. “That’s not the case,” was his swift reposte to reporters postgame.

United face Arsenal in the Premier League on Thursday and it remains to be seen if there will be enough time for Rangnick to work with his charges or even complete the formalities of his move. “As of now I haven’t got any more news for you,” said Carrick.

“I was purely focused on the game. There was enough in my head to prepare the boys. I’m sure I’ll be updated.”