Manchester United vs Watford: Every word Rangnick said about CL final, Hornets’ threats and March fixtures

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The Manchester United interim manager spoke about how March will be a defining month for the Red Devils.

Ralf Rangick has backed UEFA’s decision to move the Champions League Final from Moscow to Paris following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Manchester United currently have a 1-1 aggregate score with Atletico Madrid going into their Round of 16 second leg in the competition at Old Trafford on 15 March.

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Champions League Final and situation in Ukraine

Rangnick has said the situation in Ukraine is a ‘human disaster’ after Russia invaded the country this week, and has supported the decision to move the final.

Anthony Elanga celebrates scoring United’s goal against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday. Credit: Getty. Anthony Elanga celebrates scoring United’s goal against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday. Credit: Getty.
Anthony Elanga celebrates scoring United’s goal against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday. Credit: Getty. | Getty Images

"The situation is desperately sad, everybody will think similarly about that,” he said in Friday’s press conference.

“Just an incredible situation that we have a kind of war in Europe. Therefore the decision UEFA took was inevitable. It was the right decision.

"I think everybody has the same opinion about what’s happening there [Ukraine]. This is just a human disaster, what is happening there for all the people involved."

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Watford’s playing style and threats

Rangnick has done his research on Roy Hodgson and Watford ahead of United’s fixture with the former England boss’ side on Saturday.

The 63-year-old discussed how Hodgson has switched from his favoured 4-4-2 formation to a 4-3-3 in recent games and explained how their three forwards are the Hornets’ biggest threats.

Hodgson was appointed as Watford manager in January following the sacking of Claudio Ranieri. Credit: Getty. Hodgson was appointed as Watford manager in January following the sacking of Claudio Ranieri. Credit: Getty.
Hodgson was appointed as Watford manager in January following the sacking of Claudio Ranieri. Credit: Getty. | Getty Images

Rangnick said: “In his [Hodgson’s] first two and a half games he played in a 4-4-2, like he used to play with his former clubs. They changed in the third game at half-time and since then they’ve played in a 4-3-3 like they did under [Claudio] Ranieri.

“The style is similar I would say, they have three fast, physical strikers, always looking for the transitional moments, playing pretty direct, so this is their biggest threat."

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Importance of Watford game and busy March schedule

Rangnick has stressed how achieving good results in March could be a ‘defining’ month for the Red Devils’ this season.

The German has expressed the importance of recovery and winning Saturday’s fixture against Watford, before focusing on future matches.

"It could [be defining in the season], but for us it only makes sense to take one game after the other,” he said.

“The job is to fully recover from the game the day before yesterday and play to the highest possible level tomorrow at home, hopefully win the game against Watford and then we have a normal week to prepare for the derby and for Manchester City."

United currently sit fourth in the Premier League, one point ahead of fifth-place Arsenal who have two games in hand on the Red Devils.

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