Rangnick names Ronaldo as one of six Man Utd ‘engines’

Date published: Monday 14th March 2022 9:01 - Will Ford

Man Utd boss Rangnick

Ralf Rangnick says Cristiano Ronaldo can be a Manchester United leader after his hat-trick in the win over Tottenham, and named him among six “engines” in his squad.

Ronaldo missed the humbling derby defeat at Manchester City with a hip flexor issue but returned with a bang on Saturday.

READ MORE: Ronaldo heads Premier League winners and losers

“He is an important player of course,” Rangnick said.

“With his reputation and with the way he can still play he has influence on the team for sure but there are also other players in the team who have to take responsibility, who have to perform, who can be leaders of the team.

“He can be a leader with a performance like that. This is what I have been telling him since I arrived, that with a performance like (Saturday) he can be one of the engines of the team.

“But we have quite a few other players who can do the same, including Fred, Harry (Maguire), Rapha (Varane), Victor (Lindelof), whoever.

“Even Edi (Cavani) when he came on the last 10 or 15 minutes showed how important and what kind of role he can still play for the team.

“I wish him to be available until the end of the season. It was a big shame and also not good for our team to not have him available in the last six weeks.”

Rangnick also lauded the progress of Jadon Sancho in recent weeks, explaining that the former Borussia Dortmund star was initially struggling with the “intensity” and “physicality” of the Premier Leaue.

“They paid quite a few pounds for him in order to lure him away from Borussia Dortmund and if you pay that amount of money in a transfer fee for a player he should perform on this kind of level,” Rangnick said.

“At the end, they are all human beings. The mere fact he cost a lot of money does not mean that he is playing at that level to start with.

“He told me that of course it was a problem for him to get adjusted to the intensity of the league, to the physicality of the league.

“Now he has managed to do that. I’m happy to see him play at that kind of level right now.”

Rangnick said the winger “is now getting closer to the Jadon Sancho I’ve known from Germany”, adding “in the end it’s all about confidence”.

“When I came here it was clear we had to try everything to help him to get the best version of himself,” the interim boss added.

“And the same actually – I repeat myself – is true for a player like Marcus Rashford, for example.”

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