Ralf Rangnick

Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick says his team is able to play with both a three-man and four-man defence.

The German has experimented with a number of systems since taking over at Old Trafford, with the most recent being their match against Wolves.

Rangnick changed United’s formation at half-time against Wolves, playing with a five-man defense from the usual four.

Ahead of Monday night’s FA Cup match against Aston Villa, Rangnick suggested there will be more of the same in upcoming matches.

“Well, I think most teams have their system in England and they stick to it,” Rangnick began.

“But there are also teams who switch from a back three to a back four, or from a back four to a back three.

“Or – like Bayern Munich, for example, or [RB] Leipzig, who also did it last season with Julien Nagelsmann – even if they play defensively in a back four, they try to rotate within this system, this formation, to a little bit of an asymmetric back three.

“I think with our team, we have those two options. In order to play with a back three, we need to have most of our centre-backs available. I think under Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] the team did it, for example, in games like Tottenham, Atalanta away, or against Manchester City in the derby.

“I think we can play in the back three, this could be an option for us, but, as I said, it also depends on the players available, on the current shape and form of the players, and also, to a certain extent, to the team against which we are playing.”

United will head to Villa Park next weekend for another match against the Villans, this time in the Premier League.


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