“Jurgen [Klopp] and myself have known each other since 1997,” Ralf Rangnick told the press ahead of his first match as Man United’s interim manager.
“I was not his mentor – that was a coach called Wolfgang Frank – but we have always been in contact and had a good relationship with each other. We respect each other and that will continue.
“I remember before Jurgen became head coach at Mainz and he called me. I was at Ulm at the time and Jurgen asked me what kind of money he should be asking for from Mainz. He didn’t have an agent, so I told him.
“In a way, I was his agent and I advised him what he should ask for. Jurgen said ‘ah, do you not think that is too much to ask?’
“I told him it was the right thing to do – and I am pretty sure he got what he wanted.”
Ironically, Rangnick now joins the league that is defined by managers who looked up to him, like Klopp at Liverpool and Thomas Tuchel at Chelsea.
It certainly should lead to curious match-ups in the final part of the season when Rangnick might already have put a stamp on this Man United side.