Heart surgery

Man Utd ‘need open-heart surgery’ to get back on track under Erik ten Hag, caretaker boss Ralf Rangnick claims

RALF RANGNICK has delivered a stark diagnosis of Manchester United’s failing health, saying: ‘He needs open-heart surgery’.

Caretaker boss Rangnick will hand the scalpel to Erik ten Hag in an attempt to revive the declining giant – who face Arsenal at lunchtime on Saturday.

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Manchester United caretaker boss Ralf Rangnick has claimed the club ‘need open-heart surgery’Credit: EPA
Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has been announced as Rangnick's successor at Old Trafford

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Ajax boss Erik ten Hag has been announced as Rangnick’s successor at Old TraffordCredit: EPA

But on another day of drama at Old Trafford, it was revealed:

Speaking for the first time since Ten Hag was confirmed as his successor, Rangnick didn’t hold back in his damning assessment of the struggling club.

The German said: “It’s not enough to make a few minor changes, a few little glitches here and there and little cosmetic things.

“In medicine, it looks like open-heart surgery.

“There’s more to change than a few things here and a few things there – but that’s the right thing.

“To me, if it’s happening and everyone has realized that it has to happen and if people want to work together, then that makes sense.”

United take on Arsenal at the Emirates in the race for the top four – but centre-back Maguire and midfielder Pogba will both be absent from the starting line-up.

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Rangnick told out-of-form skipper Maguire he was left out after receiving a shocking bomb threat this week.

The German said: “It’s another bad sign of the crazy world we live in – I’m sorry for Harry, he had this terrible experience.

“He knows everyone is behind him, the club, his teammates. It’s pretty sad that crazy things like that happen.

France’s World Cup winner Pogba is out of contract this summer and Rangnick conceded on Friday he would never put on a United shirt again after suffering a calf injury in Tuesday’s 4-0 hammering away at Liverpool evening.

Rangnick explained: “As it seems at the moment, he will not be renewing his contract.

“Maybe the club or Erik won’t want to renew his contract. It is very likely that he will no longer be there next season.

“The doctor told me that he would need four weeks, minimum, to recover and that the last match is at the end of May.

“He’s a player who won the World Cup with France. He’s such a good player that he was a regular starter for a team like France.

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“We all know what kind of potential he has and what kind of good player he can be.

“He was a bit like a few other players, struggling to achieve his best performance on the pitch for a team like Manchester United on a lasting basis.

“That hasn’t just been the case this season, or in the last couple of weeks. As far as I remember, that was also the case in previous years.

” It’s hard to say. If I or other coaches knew it would be easier to change that…but I don’t.

Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo will return against Arsenal after missing the Liverpool game on compassionate leave following the death of his baby twin.

Meanwhile, new Red Devils manager Ten Hag has already held a Zoom call with the squad before they begin their rebuilding work over the summer.

Red Devils duo Paul Pogba and Harry Maguire will not start against Arsenal on Saturday

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Red Devils duo Paul Pogba and Harry Maguire will not start against Arsenal on SaturdayCredit: Getty

The Dutchman, who will join Ajax at the end of the season, told them the hard work starts now – and claimed they can still finish in the top four.

Ten Hag also warned them that he is judging them all from today’s game at the Emirates and for the rest of the season.

The 52-year-old will maintain an open dialogue with Rangnick over training performance and plans to come up with individual training plans once he arrives.