New interim manager Ralf Rangnick aims to help a Manchester United squad “full of talent” fulfil their potential during his short spell in charge.
The 63-year-old German has joined from Lokomotiv Moscow, where he was manager of sports and development, and will take over from caretaker boss Michael Carrick until the end of the season.
He will then take on a two-year consultancy role at the club.
“I am excited to be joining Manchester United and focused on making this a successful season for the club,” Rangnick told manutd.com.
“The squad is full of talent and has a great balance of youth and experience. All my efforts for the next six months will be on helping these players fulfil their potential, both individually and, most importantly, as a team.
“Beyond that, I look forward to supporting the club’s longer-term goals on a consultancy basis.”
First-team coach Carrick – who has overseen a Champions League win over Villarreal and a draw at Premier League leaders Chelsea, where he dropped Cristiano Ronaldo – will remain in caretaker charge until Rangnick’s work visa is finalised.
It is understood United’s existing backroom staff will remain in place, although Rangnick will also bring in some of his own.
“Ralf is one of the most respected coaches and innovators in European football,” said United’s football director John Murtough.
“He was our number one candidate for interim manager, reflecting the invaluable leadership and technical skills he will bring from almost four decades of experience in management and coaching.
“Everyone at the club is looking forward to working with him during the season ahead, and then for a further two years in his advisory role.”
Former United defender Gary Neville welcomed the appointment and the longer-term plan it represented.
“Welcome to the Greatest Football Club in the World Ralf Rangnick,” he wrote on Twitter.
“A contract for 6 months to coach the team. A contract for 2 years to coach the club.”
However, Neville’s ex-team-mate Rio Ferdinand believes Rangnick will have one eye on the main job.
“This guy is coming here not just to be the interim. He will be coming here to stake his claim for the job full-time,” he told his Vibe With Five podcast.
“Man United need to be rebuilt. Man Utd’s DNA hasn’t been there for years now and there is an identity that needs to be recreated that fits Man Utd.
“There is no better person in the world for me right now who would be able to do that.
“It’s a big ask for a club of this size but this guy has an absolute identity of the way he wants to play.
“Now they have an opportunity with someone who has the experience and understanding and knows the detail behind building not only a team but a club from the ground up.”
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