Ralf Rangnick explains why Manchester United didn’t make an earlier substitution against Aston Villa


Ralf Rangnick considered switching to three backs after Manchester United trailed 2-0 at Aston Villa but feared it would send the ‘wrong signal’ to the players.

Bruno Fernandes scored his second of the game to give United a two-goal cushion following a Morgan Sanson error as Villa threatened to equalize in the first 20 minutes of the second half.

None of United’s substitutes warmed up amid Villa’s dominance until just after the hour mark and Rangnick eventually turned on Jadon Sancho at 2-0.

Sancho emerged in the stoppage after Jacob Ramsey scored in the 77th minute and the United winger was reckless in possession. Fellow substitute Philippe Coutinho surged in the 82nd minute to hand Villa a deserved draw.

Rangnick made a double change with the introductions of Donny van de Beek and Jesse Lingard in the 89th minute, but by then United looked resigned to dropping more Premier League points.

“I mean, obviously after I scored the second goal, I was thinking about a back three,” Rangnick explained. “But I was worried that if we did that we would be too stuck, in the end it always happened. If I could do it again I would probably change to a different formation, to a back three.

“After leading 2-0 it could have been a bad signal for the team to fall back too far and when we played proactive today we pressed them and were able to put them under pressure and had our best moments. today.

“We were 2-0 up after 77 minutes and had 15 minutes to play and in most parts of the game we were compact, we could defend in the middle block, but in those 15 minutes we conceded two goals in four minutes I haven’t seen them on video, but they were both prepared the same way and went the same way.

“I think we had a lot of positives today. In the first half hour we dominated the ball, we also kept them away from our own box, in the first 30 minutes we didn’t concede a single shot on our goal.

“But again it’s about playing that way and as compact as we did in the first half hour and parts of the second half but we have to do it over a longer period of time, so right now it’s definitely like two points dropped, and it almost feels like a loss, to be honest, after leading 2-0.

“For me it was one of the best performances since I arrived here six weeks ago. We completely controlled the game in the first half hour, we could have led two or 3-0. In the second half time, we had our moments, we played well and when you lie 2-0 after 70 minutes you have to take the three points and that’s what we didn’t manage to do in the end.

“I don’t think we were panicking, but we weren’t as compact as we were in most other parts of the game and that’s why the two goals we conceded were too easy to dribble and cross. our lines, and that’s what we did well in other parts of the game but we didn’t do it well in the last 15 minutes.”

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