Sports, Football

Manchester United face stern test at Chelsea


By Reuters
Published : 27 Nov 2021 07:26 PM

Manchester United caretaker Michael Carrick was coy on reports of Ralf Rangnick taking over as interim manager at the Premier League club, but said on Friday that the squad would quickly absorb ideas from their next head coach.

Carrick was put in charge of United after the club sacked Ole Gunnar Solskjaer last Sunday, and after guiding them to a midweek Champions League win at Villarreal, he will remain in the dugout for Sunday's league trip to Chelsea.

“From my point of view, there’s a lot of speculation and reports, but as I’m sitting here now I’m preparing the team for the game,” Carrick told reporters when asked if Rangnick was taking over.

“I think (the new manager) can get ideas across quickly, history shows that. Sometimes it’s not just about ideas, it’s just a different voice, a freshness.

“There’s a lot of different styles and there’s a good group of players here. Whoever comes in and whatever is implemented, I’m sure they can adapt. There’s some real good talent within the squad, I’m sure they’ll look forward to what’s ahead.”

United could face a familiar foe in Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku, who played for the Old Trafford club for two seasons before finding success with Inter Milan in Italy.

However, he is returning from injury and may not start.

“It’ll be good to see Rom again. He’s a terrific footballer, scored goals wherever he has been. If Rom plays, we’re well aware of what he brings,” Carrick said.

Carrick said he was “hugely impressed” with Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea, who are top of the standings -- 12 points ahead of eighth-placed United.

“They’re super intense, well organised, really good movement across our backline and their frontline,” he said. “Very good at connecting with the midfield, with the back three building up... narrowing up and giving you problems with the wing-backs.”