Ralf Rangnick won his first game in charge as Manchester United interim manager yesterday when they beat Crystal Palace 1-0 thanks to a late Fred goal. It was a dominant performance from United as they held over 60% of possession and had double the shots that Palace had.
There was a lot of positives to take from the win. Many players that haven't shone this season like Alex Telles and Fred looked rejuvenated yesterday and there was glimpses of the gegenpress at Old Trafford. There's one stat that shows that in his short time as manager, Rangnick has already implemented his pressing system into the squad.
Manchester United won possession in the final third 12 times vs. Crystal Palace.
That’s the most they’ve done so in a Premier League match since Sir Alex Ferguson retired.
What an impact Ralf Rangnick has made already! 📈 pic.twitter.com/z1rigMRwnb
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) December 5, 2021
In his first game in charge Rangnick has already gotten this United team to press more than they have done in over eight years. After the match he spoke about how impressed he was with the team adopting his ideas so quickly and their dominance in the first half.
Overall, I'm happy. I'm positively surprised how many things they brought on the pitch, bearing in mind we had not even a full training session yesterday. We had a few conversations with players individually and with the group of players.
The first half-hour was amazing I thought, with high speed, high intensity, high tempo. We were always on the front foot during the game and the only thing missing in that part of the game was missing scoring one, two or even three goals.
There's still a lot to improve on for Manchester United, with shooting being the main one. United didn't create enough clear-cut chances and struggled to break down Palace's defence at times. With games coming quick and fast in December it'll be interesting to see how long Rangnick can keep the new manager bounce going.
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