BREAKING NEWS: Axel Tuanzebe loaned to Aston Villa for 2018/19 Season

Axel Tuanzebe loaned to Aston Villa for 2018/19 Season
Axel Tuanzebe will spend the 2018/19 season on loan at Aston Villa
Image from Sky Sports
Not exactly the completed transfer that Manchester United fans or Jose Mourinho were looking for, but youngster Axel Tuanzebe will spend this season on loan to Villa as Steve Bruce aims to finally bring his side back to the Premier League after a dismal season in 2015/16 relegated the Villians and have remained there since. Tuanzebe was loaned to Aston Villa last season in January 2018 but he was unfortunately restricted to five starts after an injury prevented him from playing for the majority of the season. 

How well has Axel Tuanzebe done for the club so far?
Axel Tuanzebe made his debut for United in January as he came on for Timothy Fosu-Mensah in a 4-0 hammering of Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup. However it was not until the latter stages of the season when he played more regularly in the first team squad Manchester United relied on a 'second team' of sorts in the Premier League as they fought tooth and nail for the prize of Champions League football and the Europa League trophy on Thursday nights in France, Belgium, West Russia and Spain. The Congolese-born 20 year old started his first Premier League game against Arsenal at the Emirates and kept the now Manchester United forward Alexis Sanchez at bay but the Red Devils still sank to a 2-0 defeat. Tuanzebe featured another three times that season and although he was sturdy and controlled in defence, the results did not show it. He was reduced to just three appearances last season as he only played one minute against Everton and limited time in the Champions League as he came on in both games to sure up the result. He did get a full match under his belt against Swansea in the Carabao Cup and United kept a clean sheet and progressed with a Jesse Lingard brace, of which the second was created by a combination of Tuanzebe and Matteo Darmian.

How has he done in the 2018 Preseason?
He has been solid when called upon and looked the part of a first team regular and should provide Aston Villa with consistency and hardiness that they will be missing following the departure of John Terry at the end of the 2017/18 season. When he came on against Bayern Munich, he had to deal with the likes of Robben, Kingsley Coman and of course, Robert Lewandowski and kept them at bay. He has a bright future that can only progress with regular football at Villa. 

What does this mean for Manchester United?
This means that United will have to rely on Jones, Smalling, Bailly and Lindelof at the start of the season, with Rojo's future in doubt with Wolves and PSG of all teams interested in the Argentine centre-half. This also means that youngsters, Fosu-Mensah and Dalot (when the latter returns to fitness) will feature more regularly in the first team with the fitness of the old guard in Valencia and Young not at the best as the former will be sidelined for Friday and Young only returning to United's training this week. Matteo Darmian seems to be forcing his way out as well so would give the formerly mentioned youngsters even more of an opportunity to stake their claim for first choice right back. This will also allow Jose Mourinho to buy another centre-back without hindering the development of Tuanzebe as United have been linked with no less than five defenders by the names of Maguire, Mina, Boateng, Alderwiereld and Varane. Of them, at least one should join the club by the Thursday deadline and will force the departure of one or two of the current batch of defenders. 

Overall, this should be a good experience for the 20 year old as he should play regularly as either a centre-back or holding midfielder for a team challenging for promotion and grow as a player whilst United can guiltlessly buy a new defender and sell another without damaging Axel's development, in an attempt to finally regain their status as a Premier League winner after a long, five season drought. 


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