Cristiano Ronaldo has only scored three goals in 14 appearances under the Manchester United interim manager.
Ralf Rangnick must set Manchester United up to give Cristiano Ronaldo the ball inside the box and encourage the team to ‘fight’ for him, according to Sami Khedira.
Despite a promising start to his second spell at Old Trafford, Ronaldo has struggled since Rangnick replaced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the club’s interim manager in December.
The German favors a really intense pressing game. This approach has seen United lose just two times in 17 games under their new coach, but they’ve only had eight wins and drawn seven times, while Ronaldo’s stats have tailed off worryingly.
What compromise must Rangnick make?
Now Khedira, who played alongside Ronaldo at Real Madrid and Juventus, has suggested how Rangnick must change his style and ideas to get the best out of his former teammate.
“I’m going to be honest, if you have Cristiano or [Lionel] Messi or Neymar [on your team], most of the time you defend with 10 men because they need some time to rest and they are not defenders,” Khedira told ESPN.
On Rangnick changing his system, Khedira added: “[Jose] Mourinho did this, and [Carlo] Ancelotti did this too.
“You have to give Ronaldo the ball in the box, you have to transmit the idea that I will fight for [Cristiano], I will run for him, I will do everything for him. Because at the end, he probably will score the winning goal and get you the three points. That’s the compromise that you have with Cristiano.”
What next for CR7?
The 37-year-old returns to action on Sunday for the second and final Manchester derby of the season.
Given their 19-point gap in the Premier League table between Manchester City and Manchester United, on top of being the away side, the latter is the underdog. A Reds win is priced at 7.50 at the time of writing.