Man Utd identified Nagelsmann as future boss and Rangnick planned hire
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Julian Nagelsmann is currently in the spotlight with the German ruthlessly sacked by Bayern Munich on Thursday. The 35-year-old only arrived at the Allianz Arena 18 months ago, with many tipping him to be there for many years to come. However, this latest development in his managerial career is poised to be a devastating one – and comes a few years after Manchester United had identified him as a potential future manager.
Nagelsmann may only be 35 but has already excelled during his managerial career so far.
The German took over at Hoffenheim back in 2016, when he was just 28, and immediately lived up to expectations by helping them avoid relegation with seven victories from their final 14 Bundesliga matches.
He also guided them into the Champions League, too, before leaving for RB Leipzig in 2019.
Nagelsmann impressed at the Red Bull Arena sufficiently enough to earn himself the Bayern Munich job in 2021, an appointment many believed would be a match made in heaven.
Yet his time at the Allianz Arena has been a turbulent one, with Bayern never quite hitting the heights many have expected.
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Now, Nagelsmann’s spell in the dugout is over with Bayern wielding the axe and preparing to appoint Thomas Tuchel – who has been out of work since leaving Chelsea earlier in the season.
It is a gamble they hope pays off as they battle to win the Bundesliga, while they’re also in contention for Champions League glory as well.
And the latest twist in Nagelsmann’s managerial career comes roughly three-and-a-half years after United had identified him as a potential future boss.
Back in 2019, it emerged the Red Devils had earmarked Nagelsmann as one for the future at a time where Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ruled the roost.
Solskjaer was struggling at the time, with United on a run of just two victories from their previous eight matches.
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And it emerged that United were full of admiration for Nagelsmann, though believed it was too early to hire the German at that time, instead choosing to monitor his career as it unfolds.
Then, back in November 2021, it was reported Ralf Rangnick planned to add his compatriot to a list of potential Solskjaer successors.
Rangnick was hired on an interim basis, with the plan for the former Leipzig and Hoffenheim manager to become a consultant at the end of the campaign.
And he was supposedly a believer than Nagelsmann should be a candidate to permanently take over at the club.
Rangnick was reportedly informed that he would have ‘some input’ over who replaces Solskjaer on a permanent basis.
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He’d previously worked with Nagelsmann at Leipzig, moving into a director of football role during his time with the German giants.
In the end, that didn’t happen.
United instead opted to hire Erik ten Hag, choosing the Dutchman over other candidates such as Mauricio Pochettino, Luis Enrique and Julen Lopetegui.
And they’ve been on an upwards trajectory ever since.
United won the Carabao Cup last month, beating Newcastle in the final, while they’re also sitting third in the Premier League table.
They’re in contention to win the Europa League, too, having seen off Real Betis in the last 16 earlier in the month.
And FA Cup glory can’t be ruled out, either, with the Red Devils through to the last four of that tournament.
Whether Ten Hag can emulate Sir Alex Ferguson by winning a treble remains to be seen.
As for Nagelsmann, it’ll be fascinating to see what happens next with the German soon to be on the market.
Tottenham and Chelsea, amid their struggles under Antonio Conte and Graham Potter respectively, would be wise to explore his appointment.
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