Ralf Rangnick has revealed he has “been in contact” with new Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag who has started to think about the Red Devils job.
Rangnick, who is expected to move into a consultancy role at United at the end of the season, has one more game as caretaker manager – and it’s the one they need to win if they want to play in the Europa League this season next.
Ten Hag is set to be in United’s last game of the Premier League season at Crystal Palace as he assesses where his new team is at, something he’s clearly counting on Rangnick to help him with.
“We have been in contact via WhatsApp and hope to have the opportunity to talk and meet in person, either over the weekend or Monday morning at the latest,” Rangnick said.
“I look forward to speaking with him and getting to know him in person.”
He added: “I still strongly believe that there is a core of players who are top, who are worthy and who are good enough to play for this club and I hope most of those players will still be there. next season.
“If the board, Erik, the scouting department – and I’ll help them with whatever issues I can to help them – if we bring in the right mentality players, the right quality players, I’m sure we we will be able to bring this club not only back on track but also to the top.
“That’s what it’s all about in the next two weeks. Maybe it won’t happen or be possible in a transfer window, but I’m very confident it can happen in the next two or three windows.
When asked if he had spoken to Ten Hag about his role as a consultant and how he would work with him, he replied, “We talked about it in detail.
“About all the different areas where maybe it could be useful. It’s not that hard to figure out what areas it might be in.
“I think we’ve shown that over the last 15 years, with Hoffenheim, Salzburg and Leipzig, even for clubs that aren’t as big as Manchester United, it’s possible to identify, to develop and even to a given time to sell.
“I know Manchester United shouldn’t normally be a selling club but more of a developing club than that is possible and that’s what’s most important.
“That the club find players for whom it is the logical continuation, it is in their career, to develop their sporting career.
“If that happens, again I’m more than positive and hopefully I can be a cheer to our fans and positive for our fans that we get Manchester United back to the top.”
Rangnick confirmed United were dealing with a number of injury issues ahead of the game at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils are two points clear of West Ham but could slide in the Europa Conference League if Rangnick’s spell ends in even more disappointment.
Jadon Sancho, Phil Jones and Alejandro Garnacho are doubts for Sunday, while Luke Shaw’s availability is unclear following the birth of his second child.
“Once again, unfortunately, we have quite a few players missing and a few other players with question marks, so we have to wait for the final training session tomorrow,” he said.
“As things stand, there will be quite a few players missing, but I remain confident that we will have a strong starting line-up and finish the season on a better note than at Brighton.
“I’m convinced that the players want to get it right and show and prove to everyone that they are capable of playing much better than we did at Brighton.
“I am also convinced that they would prefer to play in the Europa League rather than the Conference League.
“I mean, for sure they will have to play Thursday night rather than Tuesday or Wednesday, but I still think it’s a big difference if a club like Manchester United plays in the Europa League rather than the Conference League. .”