Ralf Rangnick’s stark assessment about his current progress with Man Utd flops

Ralf Rangnick admits Manchester United have not made as much progress as he wanted since taking charge.

Rangnick replaced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in November when he was appointed interim boss until the end of the season.

Since then United remain unbeaten in six games and have secured a place in the Champions League knockout stages.

But Monday night's woeful draw at second from bottom Newcastle was a serious wake-up call for Rangnick, as he bids to secure a top four finish this season and win some silverware.

United remain seventh in the table and a staggering 19 points behind leaders Manchester City ahead of Thursday's visit of Burnley to Old Trafford.

Rangnick knows a recent outbreak of Covid at the club's training ground has not helped, but insists United are still not at the levels he wants them to be.

The German coach said: "Of course not. Every ambitious coach, and there is no difference between other coaches and myself in that area, wants to take faster steps and larger steps forward.

"But in order to do that, you need to be able to train and, as you know, we had to close Carrington for four days. Before that we had eight or nine field players in training, so directly after the Norwich game and they only came back in small bits and pieces.

"The last three days we were almost back to full strength with regard to the size of the squad but we couldn’t do that much in training. On the other hand, in those two or three training sessions, the team looked good, therefore it really was a bit of a negative surprise the way that we played (at Newcastle)."

Defensive duo Raphael Varane and Harry Maguire came in for a barrage of criticism following their error-strewn performances at St James' Park.

The centre backs can expect another physical test against the Clarets at Old Trafford and Rangnick admits both Varane and captain Maguire need to raise their games.

Do you think Rangnick can turn Man United's season around and secure a top-four finish? Let us know in the comments section.

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He added: "Raphael has not played for the last five or six weeks. Even before the Tottenham game he was injured, so in the last three months he hasn't played that many games.

"Yes, he made a mistake before the first goal we conceded, but apart from that I think he was OK. I wouldn't say he was outstanding, and it's the same with Harry.

"Our problem was that we allowed too many transitional moments. This is not only a problem of the centre-backs, it is a problem of the whole team. It starts up front. We need to get better as a team."

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