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Ralf Rangnick: Manchester United win was best attack of his short tenure

Manchester United provided a much-needed response against Burnley, earning the fourth win in their last five Premier League matches to keep pace in the top-four race.

Ralf Rangnick apparently doesn’t shy away from banter.

The Manchester United manager told his troops that they failed in a big way against Newcastle on Monday, and it helped sort the Red Devils’ 3-1 win over Burnley three days later.

“The manager said we set the record for the most amount of turnovers in the league [against Newcastle],” said Scott McTominay, who scored a great goal and cranked a shot off the frame that Cristiano Ronaldo tapped in for a goal in the win at Old Trafford.

[ MORE: Three things we learned from Man United vs Burnley ]

“We had to keep the ball better,” McTominay said. “Goals help energy. If we bang in two or three at Newcastle it gives the whole team energy. It is so important.”

“Now is the time we really start stepping up and doing much, much better. The manager is so demanding and we play for Man Utd, it is what we have to do.”

But Rangnick was careful to note that the defending matters quite a bit, too.

Man United allowed Newcastle to take the lead, and their 3-0 opening against Burnley made a lone concession less of a concern.

“After the third goal we scored we gave away one goal, so whenever the ball was in our half there was still some space for improvement,” Rangnick said. “But offensively I agree that was our best performance.”

Rangnick’s men face a tough test from Wolves’ defense next, an opponent who has been stingy in recent weeks. But the United team looks better organized than it did in the final days of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, and top-four hopes are realistic. Now can they be delivered?

Follow @NicholasMendola