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Ralf Rangnick’s “same level” shot to Luke Shaw backs up Rio Ferdinand’s claim

Manchester United’s interim boss Ralf Rangnick is set to take charge of his first Champions League game in charge of the Red Devils, with Luke Shaw in line for a start

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Rangnick reflects on first win as Man Utd manager

Despite only being in charge for one game, Ralf Rangnick’s impact at Manchester United has felt an immediate one.

Against Crystal Palace, a team that had looked lethargic and bereft of ideas under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, suddenly appeared full of intent and with a renewed desire.

That didn’t necessarily translate into a dominant result, a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace at Old Trafford hardly jumps off the page as one of the club’s most memorable.

But a look beyond the most basic statistic of them all, United increased their output in almost every tangible measurement, most notably in their approach to pressing.

Beleaguered United fans had come to terms with their team allowing opponents to pass the ball, with their work off-the-ball disastrously poor in comparison to off it.

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Ralf Rangnick saw his Man Utd players pick up all three points in his first game in charge
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AFP via Getty Images)

United legend Rio Ferdinand saw that swift transformation and while it looked positive news for some – Cristiano Ronaldo in particular rolled back the years – the ex-central defender feared for others.

He pinpointed full-backs Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw, who both missed Rangnick’s debut in the dugout, as two that could struggle to return to the XI.

“I’ve got to be honest, Wan-Bissaka has got a hell of a job getting back in this team. The same for Luke Shaw,” Ferdinand said on his FIVE YouTube channel.

“They’ve both got one hell of a job. One thing this manager likes is full-backs who can actually play and get on the ball.

“As well as doing the other stuff like pressing, he wants output with the ball. That’s the weakest part of Wan-Bissaka’s game, there’s going to be a big fight for him to get back into this team.”

Shaw missed the game after suffering a concussion back in November, but his form had deserted him well before that injury against Watford.

The England international enjoyed the best season of his career last term, taking that good form into the Euros which saw him net a goal in the final against Italy.

But like his Three Lions team-mate Harry Maguire, Shaw has struggled to maintain those levels and Alex Telles now has a genuine chance to make that position his own.

Rio Ferdinand hinted Luke Shaw could struggle to regain his place from Alex Telles
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BT Sport)

Telles was signed to provide genuine competition to Shaw last summer, but struggled in his maiden campaign, limited to sporadic appearances in the league and cup competitions.

However, even when Shaw was enjoying his breakout campaign, new United boss Rangnick wasn’t overly impressed with his showings.

In fact, during the 2020/21 season, Rangnick suggested to his future employer that replacing the left-back would be beneficial in the long-term.

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Shaw has struggled for form so far this season

“I also think that they could do with a left-back,” the former RB Leipzig chief said.

“I know they have Luke Shaw but I’m not so sure if he’s still on the same level that you need to be for a club like Manchester United.”

Shaw is in line to start against Young Boys tonight and Rangnick has made it clear that every player will have the chance to impress.

But the leash on Shaw appears substantially shorter than some of his counterparts and he will need to hit the ground running.

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