“I’m not blaming him” – Ralf Rangnick Admits Ronaldo Is Not A “Pressing Monster” Ralf Rangnick has avoided blaming Cristiano Ronaldo for the club’s bad season, but he has admitted that the striker is not suited to a pressing style.
Ronaldo was one of Manchester United‘s few bright spots throughout a disappointing season, netting 24 goals in 39 outings across all competitions.
Fans and journalists have chastised him for not pressing high up the pitch, a trait that has come to define Ralf Rangnick’s play at past clubs. Rangnick, on the other hand, refused to blame the striker for his team’s shortcomings.
“Cristiano Ronaldo and I’m not blaming him at all, he did great in those games,” he said. “But he’s not a pressing monster. He’s not a player, even when he was a young player, who was crying, shouting ‘hooray, the other team has got the ball, where can we win balls?
“The same with quite a few other players so we had to make some compromises at one stage, maybe we made a few too many – that’s also possible.”
Rangnick has criticized the club’s lack of activity in the January transfer window, particularly in terms of offensive additions. However, as he takes on a more behind-the-scenes role at the club, the German has vowed that incoming manager Erik Ten Hag would have support in the transfer market.
“We spoke about the last transfer window in January where we and the board decided not to sign any players but this is different now,” he added.
“In this summer window there will be some new players and Erik will also have some influence on which kind of player he wants.”
“That [signing new players] will happen in this window and hopefully the next two windows and I think it’s obvious to everybody for the owners, the board and every supporter we need to increase and raise the level of quality within the squad.”
Ralf Rangnick says he couldn't enforce his pressing style of play because of United's players 👀 pic.twitter.com/Wdmy93yG7J
— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) May 22, 2022
With Ten Hag in attendance, Rangnick will take command of United’s final match of the season against Crystal Palace. However, the Dutchman will be unable to observe Ronaldo up close because he is expected to miss the encounter due to a hip flexor injury.