Ralf Rangnick explains Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial being left out of Man Utd squad

The newly-appointed Manchester United interim boss had some big decisions to make during his first game in charge against Crystal Palace, opting to leave two big names at home

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Rangnick reflects on first win as Man Utd manager

Ralf Rangnick has revealed his reasons for not selecting either of Jesse Lingard or Anthony Martial in his first Manchester United match-day squad.

The former RB Leipzig boss enjoyed his first experience in the Old Trafford dug-out, guiding the Red Devils to a much-needed victory over Patrick Vieira ‘s Crystal Palace.

He, along with every member of the United faithful, was made to wait for the eventual winner however, with 77 minutes on the clock before the much-maligned defensive midfielder Fred curled home a delightful winner to ease the growing tension inside the ground.

Following the Brazilian’s goal, Rangnick joked he couldn’t believe Fred had scored from outside the box with his weaker foot.

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Ralf Rangnick secured victory in his first game as Manchester United boss


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United’s new boss told BBC Match of the Day after the game: “I had to ask my assistant coach if that was Fred’s right foot.

“I thought he could only shoot with his left. I’m happy for him.”

Prior to kick-off, the pre-match discourse centred heavily around which starting eleven Rangnick would opt to deploy, though the German quickly explained his decisions after the game.

“The team did well against Arsenal, especially in the second half. As everyone was fit and available, there was no reason to change the XI.”

Pressed on the absence of both Lingard and Martial, Rangnick revealed: “Jesse and Anthony indicated after training [yesterday] that they didn’t feel well, they felt pain. That’s the reason they are not in the squad.”

The fact that both of Lingard and Martial’s absences were down to fitness-related issues rather than anything tactical will go some way to quelling the speculation touting with the pair with imminent exits.

Lingard enjoyed a stellar loan spell away from Old Trafford during the latter half of last term with West Ham and was relentlessly linked with a return to East London on a permanent basis in the summer.

A deal failed to materialise however, after the 28-year-old was reportedly given assurances of regular first team football from Rangnick’s predecessor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Martial is not in a similar position as Lingard in the sense there is not an obvious choice of club to move to, but a number of teams across the continent are rumoured to be interested in the Frenchman’s signature.

Jesse Lingard has been linked with a permanent move to West Ham


Marcio Machado/Getty Images)

Rangnick may have registered a win at the first attempt, but has played down United’s prospects for the remainder of the season ahead, claiming: “You have to be aware of what kind of players you have and where they stand.

“I cannot ask things of them that they can’t deliver right now.

“I have to take them [the players] and accept where they currently are. They are experienced and smart enough to know that.

“I cannot turn the players we have into the pressing monsters I want them to be within two, three or four weeks.”

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