Schalke coach Ralf Rangnick believes his team’s inexperience compared to Manchester United’s means they will be the side more hungry to win in their Champions League semi-final.
United are clear favourites for the two-legged semi-final, which kicks off in Germany tonight, but Rangnick believes that his players will respond to the fact that this might be a once in a lifetime chance for them to reach a major European final
“Sir Alex Ferguson has more experience and has won many more trophies,” Rangnick said.
“Manchester United do have a very experienced team, on average three to four years older than ours. But maybe the fact we are more inexperienced means we are a really hungry team with more passion.
“It is something that makes this match all the more alluring for our team. Our players are in this position for the first time, with the exception of Raul, who might be there for the last time. We have to show what we can achieve and get the best out of it, so hopefully, this will be a benefit for us.”
Rangnick is relishing the chance to play English opponents as as it takes the 52-year-old back to his youth. As a student in the late 1970s, he spent a year at Sussex University, regularly travelling to London to watch matches.
“It was a wonderful feeling to see the support for everything,” he said. “I am looking forward to the atmosphere, both tomorrow and at Old Trafford. In England you don’t get situations where the fans whistle in displeasure. It is real support.”