Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick spoke of eradicating the bad body language that had been shown against Newcastle when his team ended the calendar year with a much improved performance to beat Burnley at Old Trafford.
Scott McTominay and Cristiano Ronaldo each scored on an own goal from Ben Mee to give United a 3-0 lead, before Aaron Lennon withdrew one for Burnley, all before half-time.
United had been heavily criticized for their attitude in a 1-1 draw against Newcastle just three days earlier, with former captain Gary Neville shouting the “whining” players.
“In Newcastle it was a difficult match for us, we were down 1-0 after seven minutes, and they did well,” Rangnick explained via Sky Sports after facing Burnley.
“We did not play well, especially in the first half in Newcastle and the reaction to what is happening on the pitch is the question. Are we hitting back? Are we showing them that we are still a team and we believe in ourselves? Or are we shaking our heads?
“This kind of thing only helps the other team and hurts our own team. For me it was clear to say to them …” Listen, we behave and work as a team and do not show this kind of side effects on the pitch ‘. “
McTominay spoke to Amazon Prime Sport after the match: “We all learn and adapt. We play for Manchester United, we are dominant and we have to get results.
“Body language is one thing and the boss has come in and said he wants to remove it, so it’s final. We have taken it to heart.”
Overall, Rangnick was pleased with what he saw against Burnley, calling it the team’s best attacking performance since being named earlier this month.
“When the ball was on our half of the field, there is still room for improvement, but offensively it was the best performance so far,” the German continued.
“It was about fresh legs, fresh energy, fresh bodies, more physicality against this team. We knew how difficult they would be, how persistent they would play and it was a bit of a war of exhaustion, a bit difficult one to play.
“Therefore, it was important for me to have six fresh players on the pitch compared to the match in Newcastle.
“In the end, it paid off. It was the right player in the right positions. For me, it was important to have each player in their best possible position.”
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