Ralf Rangnick has made a failed attempt to bring a renowned director of football to Old Trafford, according to a new report.
French outlet Footmercato.net claims that AS Monaco’s Paul Mitchell has been headhunted by both Newcastle and Manchester United in recent weeks but has chosen to stay in Monte Carlo.
‘Recently approached with insistence by Newcastle, the native of Manchester, now 40 years old, cut short all negotiations,’ the outlet says.
‘Mitchell does not wish to embark on a new challenge. In addition, and as a result of his excellent work done with the Asemists, the main interested party is also closely followed by Manchester United, and this for several weeks.
‘Wanted by the Red Devils to perfect the talent detection and recruitment sector, Mitchell, who has worked alongside Ralf Rangnick in the past … therefore seems to be firmly attached to [AS Monaco].’
Mitchell has been very much a part of the Red Bull empire that Rangnick helped to create, having risen through the scouting ranks at RB Leipzig before moving on to New York and RB Bragantino.
Prior to his stint at Leipzig, the Mancunian had spells at MK Dons, Southampton and Spurs as chief scout. He is credited with the discovery of Dele Alli at the latter.
United were linked with Mitchell as DoF around three years ago by German outlet, Bild.
One question raised by Rangnick’s failed attempt to recruit Mitchell is where does it leave current director of football, John Murtough?
Eyebrows were raised when United finally appointed a DoF earlier this year. The fact that it was an internal appointment, and the promotion of a sport scientist with little pedigree in the sporting director role, led many to accuse United of not taking the role seriously and having installed little more than a figurehead.
But the fact remains that a club of United’s stature needs a specialist in recruitment and scouting with an extensive knowledge of the game and circle of contacts. And it would seem that if Footmercato’s report is correct, Rangnick has identified this and is attempting to correct it at long last.
The news therefore suggests that it could be a matter of time before Murtough’s job title and/or description is changed to allow a more conventional sporting director such as Mitchell to be brought on board.