Axel Tuanzebe

Axel Tuanzebe (born 14 November 1997) is a professional footballer who plays as a defender for Premier League club Manchester United.

Axel Tuanzebe
Manchester United v Wigan Athletic, January 2017 (33).JPG
Tuanzebe playing for Manchester United in 2017
Personal information
Full name Axel Tuanzebe[1]
Date of birth (1997-11-14) 14 November 1997 (age 22)[2]
Place of birth Bunia, DR Congo
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)[3]
Playing position(s) Defender
Club information
Current team
Manchester United
Number 38
Youth career
2006–2015 Manchester United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2015– Manchester United 10 (0)
2018Aston Villa (loan) 5 (0)
2018–2019Aston Villa (loan) 25 (0)
National team
2016 England U19 1 (0)
2016–2017 England U20 9 (0)
2017 England U21 1 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 19:57, 23 October 2020 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 01:16, 14 November 2017 (UTC)

Tuanzebe is a graduate of the Manchester United youth system and won both the Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year and Denzil Haroun Reserve Team Player of the Year awards. He made his competetive debut in an FA Cup game against Wigan Athletic in January 2017. He had two spells on loan at Aston Villa and helped them to win promotion to the Premier League in 2019.

Born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, he relocated to England at a young age and has represented England at under-19, under-20 and under-21 levels.

Club career

Manchester United

Early years

Tuanzebe was associated with the Manchester United academy from the age of eight.[4] He was captain of the Milk Cup winning youth side in 2014.[5] In May 2015, Tuanzebe won the Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year award.[6] Academy coach Paul McGuinness noted that Tuanzebe was likely the first first-year scholar to captain the under-18 side since Gary Neville.[7]

On 31 October 2015, at the age of 17, Tuanzebe was named on the substitutes bench for a match against Crystal Palace in the Premier League, the first time he had been a member of a first-team matchday squad.[8][9]

2016–17 season

On 29 January 2017, Tuanzebe made his Manchester United debut as a 68th-minute substitute, replacing Timothy Fosu-Mensah during a 4–0 FA Cup victory over Wigan Athletic at Old Trafford.[10] Four days later, he extended his contract at Manchester United until 2020, with the option of a further year.[11] On 7 May 2017, Tuanzebe started a senior match for the first time, in a 2–0 defeat against Arsenal in the Premier League.[12] He won the Denzil Haroun Reserve Team Player of the Year award in May 2017.[13]

2017–18 season

Tuanzebe made his first start of the season against Swansea City in the EFL Cup on 24 October 2017, playing a key part in the second goal of the 2–0 victory.[14] On 5 December 2017, he made his European debut in a 2–1 victory over CSKA Moscow in the UEFA Champions League.[15]

Loans to Aston Villa

On 25 January 2018, Tuanzebe joined Championship side Aston Villa on loan for the remainder of the season.[16] However, due to suffering an injury he was only able to make five appearances before returning to Manchester United.[17] In August 2018, after going on United's pre-season tour to the United States, he joined Aston Villa on loan again for the 2018–19 season.[18] He played the full 90 minutes as Villa achieved promotion to the Premier League with a victory over Derby County in the 2019 EFL Championship play-off Final.[19]

2019–20 season

In July 2019, Tuanzebe signed a new contract with Manchester United until June 2022, with an option for an additional year.[20] He became the youngest player to captain United since Norman Whiteside in 1985, during an EFL Cup victory against Rochdale in September 2019.[21]

International career

Tuanzebe is eligible to represent England or the Democratic Republic of the Congo at international level.[22]

Tuanzebe began his international career in June 2016, when he made his first appearance for England at under-19 level, against Mexico.[23] He was a member of the under-20 squad which won all three matches at the Four Nations tournament in October 2016.[24] Tuanzebe was withdrawn from selection for the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup due to club commitments.[25]

On 10 November 2017, Tuanzebe made his debut for England at under-21 level, against Ukraine.[26]

Style of play

Tuanzebe's preferred position is at centre-back, but he can also play as a right-back, and has featured as a holding midfielder.[27][28] His playing style has been compared to that of teammate Eric Bailly and Bayern Munich's Javi Martínez.[29] Tuanzebe's performance on his first-team debut in a friendly against Wigan Athletic in July 2016 led manager José Mourinho to remark, "10 minutes is enough! The potential is there, you see it immediately."[30]

Personal life

Tuanzebe was born in Bunia, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.[2] He relocated to the U.K. with his family at the age of four.[31] He attended St Cuthbert's RC High School in Rochdale and captained the Year 7 football team to the final of the English National Schools Cup at Stamford Bridge in 2009.[32] In the same year, he was awarded Sports Boy of the Year by the Mayor of Rochdale.[32] He also represented his school in cross-country and triple-jump.[32] He is the younger brother of ex-Clitheroe striker Dimitri Tuanzebe.[33]

In July 2018, he broke the Guinness World Record for the fastest time to individually clear a game of Hungry Hungry Hippos, while in Los Angeles on Manchester United's pre-season tour.[34][35]

Career statistics

As of match played 20 October 2020[2]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Manchester United 2015–16 Premier League 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2016–17 Premier League 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 0
2017–18 Premier League 1 0 0 0 1 0 1[a] 0 0 0 3 0
2018–19 Premier League 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019–20 Premier League 5 0 0 0 2 0 3[b] 0 10 0
2020–21 Premier League 0 0 0 0 0 0 1[a] 0 1 0
Total 10 0 1 0 3 0 5 0 0 0 19 0
Aston Villa (loan) 2017–18 Championship 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 0
2018–19 Championship 25 0 0 0 2 0 3[c] 0 30 0
Total 30 0 0 0 2 0 3 0 35 0
Career total 40 0 1 0 5 0 5 0 3 0 54 0
  1. ^ a b Appearance in UEFA Champions League
  2. ^ Appearances in UEFA Europa League
  3. ^ Appearances in EFL Championship play-offs

Honours

Manchester United

Aston Villa

Individual

References

  1. ^ "2020/21 Premier League squads confirmed". Premier League. 20 October 2020. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  2. ^ a b c Axel Tuanzebe at Soccerway. Retrieved 20 October 2020.
  3. ^ Luckhurst, Samuel (29 January 2017). "Who is Axel Tuanzebe? Manchester United youngster in profile as he makes debut vs Wigan". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  4. ^ "Axel Tuanzebe player profile page". Manchester United F.C. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  5. ^ "4 Manchester United youngsters who look destined for the first team". FourFourTwo. 16 November 2016. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  6. ^ a b Mathieson, Stuart (19 May 2015). "David de Gea: I love Manchester United colleagues and fans are best in the world". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  7. ^ "Who is Axel Tuanzebe? Profile of Manchester United youngster on loan with Aston Villa". Manchester Evening News. 15 March 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  8. ^ Magowan, Alistair (31 October 2015). "Crystal Palace 0–0 Manchester United". BBC Sport. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  9. ^ "Manchester United manager Van Gaal explains why he named Tuanzebe in Crystal Palace squad". Manchester Evening News. 7 November 2015. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  10. ^ "Manchester United 4–0 Wigan Athletic". BBC Sport. 29 January 2017. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  11. ^ "Axel Tuanzebe signs new Manchester United contract". Sky Sports. 2 February 2017. Retrieved 2 February 2017.
  12. ^ Lovett, Samuel (8 May 2017). "Manchester United's Axel Tuanzebe 'chuffed' after making full debut and taking on Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez". The Independent. London. Retrieved 14 May 2017.
  13. ^ a b Luckhurst, Samuel (18 May 2017). "Manchester United player Ander Herrera wins Player of the Year award". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  14. ^ Pritchard, Dafydd (24 October 2017). "Swansea City 0–2 Manchester United". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  15. ^ Shamoon, Hafez. "Manchester United 2–1 CSKA Moscow". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 September 2019.
  16. ^ "Villa sign Man Utd defender Tuanzebe". BBC Sport. 25 January 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  17. ^ "Axel Tuanzebe: Aston Villa re-sign Manchester United defender on loan". BBC Sport. 6 August 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  18. ^ "Manchester United centre-back Axel Tuanzebe joins Aston Villa on loan". Sky Sports. 6 August 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  19. ^ a b Woodcock, Ian (27 May 2019). "Aston Villa 2–1 Derby County". BBC Sport. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  20. ^ "Manchester United: Andreas Pereira and Axel Tuanzebe sign new contracts". BBC Sport. 5 July 2019. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  21. ^ "Ole Gunnar Solskjaer explains why Axel Tuanzebe captained Manchester United". Manchester Evening News. 26 September 2019. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  22. ^ "Bolasie & Abraham can fire Aston Villa back to the Premier League". ESPN. 14 September 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  23. ^ Marshall, Adam (7 June 2016). "Tuanzebe primed for first international tournament with England". Manchester United F.C. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  24. ^ "England Under-20s win mini-tournament after 2–0 win over USA". The Football Association. 10 October 2016. Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  25. ^ "Man United's Axel Tuanzebe left out of England U20 World Cup squad". ESPN. 8 May 2017. Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  26. ^ "Ukraine U21 0–2 England U21". BBC Sport. 10 November 2017. Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  27. ^ Ducker, James (9 May 2017). "Axel Tuanzebe out of England U-20 squad as Mourinho wants him to play more for Man Utd". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 14 May 2017.
  28. ^ Marshall, Adam (25 May 2017). "Axel Tuanzebe is coming of age at United". Manchester United F.C. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  29. ^ Tighe, Sam (14 September 2016). "Manchester United's Axel Tuanzebe Has Hallmarks of Eric Bailly and Javi Martinez". Bleacher Report. Turner. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  30. ^ Bajkowski, Simon (16 July 2016). "Mourinho praises Manchester United youngster Tuanzebe for his EIGHT minutes against Wigan". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  31. ^ "Manchester United starlet Axel Tuanzebe out to prove he has come of age during Aston Villa loan". Express & Star. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  32. ^ a b c Luckhurst, Samuel (11 November 2015). "Manchester United youngster Axel Tuanzebe 'born for greatness'". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  33. ^ Luckhurst, Samuel (29 January 2017). "Who is Axel Tuanzebe? Manchester United youngster in profile". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  34. ^ Dunker, Charlotte (18 July 2018). "Axel Tuanzebe breaks bizarre Guinness World Record on Manchester United pre-season tour". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  35. ^ "Fastest time to clear a game of Hungry Hungry Hippos (individual)". Guinness World Records. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  36. ^ McNulty, Phil (24 May 2017). "Ajax 0–2 Manchester United". BBC Sport. Retrieved 11 August 2019.
    "Ajax v Manchester United – UEFA Europa League Final". Getty Images. Retrieved 11 August 2019.

External links