The disparity in quality between Manchester United and the Premier League's championship challengers will be a source of anxiety for the club, but there may be no quick answer.
The Red Devils are presently fourth in the Premier League, just one point ahead of Arsenal, who have two games in hand.
Since Sir Alex Ferguson's departure in 2013, the level of football at Old Trafford has deteriorated dramatically, and their four titles—none since their Europa League victory in 2017—have barely covered the gaps.
The German coach is keen to end his career by guiding Manchester United to Champions League football next season, despite the club's failure to bring in new signings in January, combined with a slew of failing players.
In addition to their domestic troubles, United's poor possibilities of winning any other silverware are wearing on some players, with Ronaldo warning that if he cannot win trophies at Old Trafford, he must examine his choices.
It's difficult to say that I don't want more, because if I'm at a club that provides me with the potential to win more things, why not? He told DAZN. and also on the national team.
And that is the age, experience, and intellect to understand that you may lose some things to win others and have the perfect balance to continue competing and being at the top level.
However, United should take a page from Arsenal's book and disregard the threats of the Portuguese star in order to think long-term, pondering their next actions rather than rushing to match the demands of the club legend.
Of course, if they were able to attract great players like Declan Rice and Erling Haaland, their results should have improved. However, it is widely acknowledged that the current United side needs investment in several areas if they are to mount a credible title push.
Arsenal aren't yet title challengers, either, and have finished outside the top six in back-to-back seasons under Mikel Arteta. However, their dedication to the Spanish head coach's vision, as well as their willingness to part ways with the stronger personalities in the dressing room — regardless of talent — is already paying dividends.
The Gunners appear to be a new and improved squad with a sense of unity and belief. And Arteta will be glad to know that his stars will only get better with time, as he spent £150 million on players aged 24 and under in the summer.
In terms of morale, the opposite could be said about United, with allegations of a spat between Ronaldo and captain Harry Maguire recently surfacing, as well as leaks from the dressing room indicating players were dissatisfied with Rangnick's methods.
Before they can think about silverware, whoever replaces Rangnick will have the difficult challenge of integrating a dressing room full of world-class players into a cohesive team unit, which may affect Ronaldo's future.
And, in order to do so, United must be open about their short-term goals and how long it will take their new manager, whoever he or she is, to restore the club's success.