Sean Dyche's meeting with German godfather of gegenpressing - new Manchester United interim boss Ralf Rangnick

Sean Dyche has long believed that pressing is the new passing.

By Chris Boden
Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 2:11 pm
Updated Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 8:25 pm
Ralph Rangnick
Ralph Rangnick

And he once enjoyed a drink and conversation with the man considered to be the German godfather of gegenpressing - the new interim Manchester United boss Ralf Rangnick.

German coaches are currently very much in vogue, with Thomas Tuchel at Chelsea, Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool and Julian Nagelsmann at Bayern Munich, and that trio in particular were influenced or learned under Rangnick.

Klopp called him "one of the best, if not the best German coach", after his success at Ulm 1846, where he won the Regionalliga Süd, VfB Stuttgart, winning the UEFA Intertoto Cup, Hannover 96, winning the 2. Bundesliga,1899 Hoffenheim, gaining successive promotions to the Bundesliga. Schalke 04, where he won the DFB-Pokal and reached the semi-finals of the Champions League, and RB Leipzig, helping the club proper in European football.

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He then joined Russian club Lokomotiv Moscow as manager of sports and development this year, before being approached by United.

And Dyche said: "I once had a beer with him and Paul Mitchell, who I know - a casual beer the night before a Leaders in Sport conference.

"So I met him and we just chewed the fat, like you do, about football and the challenges, and obviously he was asking me about Burnley at the time - it was probably about three years ago, pre-pandemic,

"Paul Mitchel had worked with him, ex-Tottenham,

"I had a good chat with him about general stuff, but never really looked at his own individual stuff - I know he's done some good work, of course."

Rangnick will take over at Old Trafford until the end of the season, before taking a consultancy role at the club, and Dyche added: "I'm sure, like most managers, he'll have a base that he'll work from, but, equally, I think he'll look around at the playing squad, the staff he's introduced to, and I believe there's a kind of consultancy kind of background to it as well.

"I think he's well-travelled enough to know that he'll have to learn about the players and probably find the crossover between the style he thinks will work, and that style that will work.

"There's always that crossover with a new manager, no matter who you are."