Ralf Rangnick hits back at Gary Neville criticism of Man United players

Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick has hit back at Gary Neville over his criticism of the travelling done by the club’s players during the international break.

Neville hit out at United’s players when a number of them were seen in different locations around the world. Marcus Rashford visited Dubai to watch boxing, with Jadon Sancho also in the country.

Jesse Lingard, meanwhile, went to Milan. Avram Glazer watched the Bahrain Grand Prix at the Sakhir International Circuit.

Rangnick used the downtime to take in some live cricket. He travelled to the Caribbean to watch the second Test between England and West Indies in Barbados.

However, the decisions of United players and management were questioned by some fans, with the club on a poor run of form.

Before the international break, the Red Devils lost 4-1 at Manchester City in the Premier League on March 6. Aside from the result, the biggest concern was the lack of intensity in the closing stages. United completed fewer sprints in the second half compared to the first.

City were the opposite. They ramped up the intensity as they held on to over 83% of ball possession.

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Nine days later, United suffered a devastating Champions League exit to Atletico Madrid. They lost 1-0 at Old Trafford.

Gary Neville’s furious criticism of United players

Gary Neville was hugely critical of players and staff for their prominent appearances in huge world events, on the back of two defeats that essentially sum up United’s season.

He tweeted: “I remember a time when United players, managers, executives wouldn’t be seen in their local Italian after a draw at home, let alone getting knocked out of Europe.

“This last week, we’ve seen a global tour of F1, concerts, cricket and UFC events. This lot are tone deaf!”

When challenged on his views, Neville referred to his primary source of frustration as the fact that United players were not laying low after poor performances.

“They can go on holiday, relax, take time off,” he began.

“However, if you’ve been knocked out of the Champions League, FA Cup, League Cup and floundering in the league, I wouldn’t think it’s too much to ask to lie low a bit!!”

Ralf Rangnick responds to Gary Neville criticism

Ralf Rangnick Gary Neville
Image Credit: Getty

Speaking for the first time since the international break, Ralf Rangnick addressed the criticism from Gary Neville before United’s Premier League clash against Leicester.

He said: “I can understand that former players and TV pundits have to have a strong opinion. On the other hand, the situation was a particular one.

“We had two-and-a-half weeks since the last game against Atletico and an international break, and only had six or seven players for training.

“I don’t think it would have made sense – although maybe for public perception it might have made sense – to show we’re training every day with five or six players. If you do that, those six or seven players will physically not be in a better state of mind.

“That’s why we decided to give them a couple of days off, then have them back for a week and now prepare since Tuesday for the game. In a way, I can understand [the reaction]. But that brings us back to where we are currently are.

“Those are things that can be changed. Hopefully, we will never be in a situation where we have no competitive game for two-and-a-half weeks.”

Featured Image Credit: Getty