Ralf: I was impressed by the team

Saturday 22 January 2022 18:42

Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick cherished the late scenes inside Old Trafford after a late Marcus Rashford goal saw us pick up an important win over West Ham United.

The Premier League contest looked to be heading for a stalemate at Old Trafford before Rangnick’s three substitutes - Anthony Martial, Edinson Cavani and Rashford – combined to send the United faithful at the Theatre of Dreams into delirium. 

Ralf was part of those celebrations, and the German made his delight at a first stoppage-time winner of his reign known after the final whistle too, when he took to the pitch to congratulate his players and thank the fans for their support. 

Our interim manager made a further point of doing both of those things during his post-match media duties, having been impressed with his side's combative showing, and equally appreciative of the vocal backing from the home support throughout the afternoon.

Scroll down to see that praise, as well as more of the boss' key post-match quotes, in the aftermath of the victory…
Rangnick's verdict on our last-gasp win Video

Rangnick's verdict on our last-gasp win

In our interview, Ralf pays tribute to our inspirational fans and reflects on a stunning finale...

“It couldn’t have been better than that, if you score in the last second of the game. It was amazing. The atmosphere, the Red Army was pushing the team for 94 minutes. A great atmosphere and I can only say congrats and thank you for the support of the fans, that made it a lot easier for us and as I said, an enormous, important win and physically, [it was] a great performance. We didn’t always find the right solutions in possession of the ball, especially in the final third of the game, but the way we played defensively after playing only three days ago at Brentford, I was really impressed by the team.”

“I wouldn’t mind if that happened but again of course we would also like to have more games like Brentford when we were 3-0 up. But if you score in the last second of the game, the big advantage is there is no time for the other team to reply, and that was the good one about today’s goal.”
“Yeah, I’m extremely happy for the boys that they did it. We had to take some risk, in the last 15 minutes, we played almost with four strikers in a 4-2-4, but we knew we had to win that game and that’s why we decided to take that risk.”

“When we last spoke one-and-a-half weeks ago, I told him it is all about being professional until the very last day. No mention of how long he will stay or wanting to leave, for me it is about being professional. I think it was good to have this conversation with him. In the last two games, he was part of the squad and today he played a vital role in creating that goal we scored. I know that he is a top player, one of the best strikers in the Premier League, but we have other players in this position and it is his wish to leave and as I said to him, ‘listen, it always takes different parts to make an agreement’ and the way that he trained and the way he played when he came on today showed that the professionalism that I expect from everybody. I am happy that he was playing today and that he could come on and that he played a vital role in preparing that goal.”
Highlights: United 1 West Ham 0 Video

Highlights: United 1 West Ham 0

Don’t miss the best bits from a tight and competitive match at Old Trafford, concluded by a last-gasp goal...

“Defensively, I would say yes [we had it] because from the normal game, we didn’t allow them too many chances and as I said, it wasn’t easy against them, they’re a very physical team. I’m still not quite happy with the way that we played with the ball so this will have to be the next steps in the next couple of weeks, that we also find better solutions in possession of the ball.”

“I can only remember one good chance they had, the corner kick, five minutes from time. From normal play, I can’t remember any situation. We had two or three good ones, especially with Fred, the header from Cristiano in the first half. It was a very competitive and a very physical game.”
United 1 West Ham 0: Rangnick's press conference Video

United 1 West Ham 0: Rangnick's press conference

The manager answered journalists' questions on our late heroics, Rashford and Martial after the final whistle...

“It is very important. We have high ambitions in the club. We play a week on Friday against Middlesbrough and then away at Burnley. All of the games present challenges and we will have to perform on a high level. It will get physical again in those games, but I think the team realises now they are talking those steps. It is not so easy now to score goals against us. This was the best part, not only the clean sheet, but the way we defend as a team; the counter pressing was good, and we took the ball away from them. It is not easy against those physical players like [Michail] Antonio. That was the part of the game I was very pleased about."

“Yes [it’s big to go into the international break with a win], absolutely, for everybody. For the players, for the staff. It’s good to have a little bit of a rest [and then] we’ll prepare the team for the rest of the season.”