Ralf Rangnick speaking at a press conference.

Rangnick excited by the chance to face Simeone

Tuesday 22 February 2022 14:17

Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has expressed his admiration and respect for Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone, ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League match in Spain.

Our German tactician has never previously faced the black-suited Argentinian during his distinguished coaching career and is looking forward to the challenge in our last-16 ties.

Simeone is no stranger to English football fans, of course, following his role in David Beckham's infamous red card at the 1998 World Cup. The former midfielder also came up against United during the 1998/99 Treble-winning season, with Internazionale, during a top-class playing career.

Since hanging up his boots, Simeone has forged a reputation as one of the most accomplished managers in Europe after restoring the fortunes of Atletico in Spain. He has led to the club to two La Liga titles, two Europa Leagues, two UEFA Super Cups, the Spanish Cup and Spanish Super Cup.
Atletico v Utd: Ralf and Bruno's press conference Video

Atletico v Utd: Ralf and Bruno's press conference

Ralf Rangnick was joined by Bruno Fernandes was our pre-match press conference, which you can watch in full here...

Speaking in our pre-match press conference, Rangnick was asked for his thoughts on Simeone and Ralf spoke eloquently about his opposite number. 

“In those 11 years he has won trophies with a clear identity and with a recognisable playing style,” Rangnick told journalists. “And I don't think this has changed in the last years. 

“There is always an emotional side and this also reflects the character of the manager - Diego Simeone is probably one of the most emotional managers in Europe. 
“The style and the way that his teams have always performed reflects those emotions that he tries to bring into the team, and this is what it's all about. We need to match the levels of energy and emotions in both games and this is what we have to be aware of. 

“I will try to prepare our team, my team, for exactly that kind of challenge. It will be physical, it will be emotional. We have to be mentally strong in both games, even more so when we play away. 

“We haven't played against each other as of yet but I have always admired what he has achieved. In 11 years with Atletico, I think he has changed that club completely into one of the most respected clubs in Europe. As I said, I am forwarding to the two games.”

Press conference clips: