Axel Tuanzebe.

Tuanzebe primed for Reds return

Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe says he is ready to get “rock and rolling” as he targets a return to action.

The homegrown centre-back has not played since the Carabao Cup win over Colchester United last year and is desperate to make up for lost time.

After stepping up his fitness at the Aon Training Complex, it is hoped it will not be long before we get to see him pull on a United shirt again.

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“Thank you for asking,” he said, when MUTV's Stewart Gardner enquired about how he was feeling fitness-wise. “I’m good, thank you. It’s just good to be back among the lads in training again, as it’s been a while.

“Over the last 12 months, you can say, I’ve not been able to get my foot down and just get going. I was always breaking down with an injury but I trust in the rehab team. I’ve been working closely with John Davin and he’s helped me a lot so, this time, I want to get rock and rolling.

“It’s been several injuries,” he clarified. “It’s been unfortunate with the times of the injury and pretty much all of them there was nothing I could have done about it. It’s good to be back, I’m grateful to be back to have a few games among the lads.”

It must have been difficult for the Academy graduate to deal with being on the sidelines but, at 22, this could be his time to shine after the international break. He was asked if it was mentally tough to be out of action for so long.

Axel Tuanzebe.
Axel is back in training and hopefully closing on a first-team return.

“Most definitely,” he replied. “You’re just looking at the other lads progressing, the games being played, just counting the amount of games you’re missing and getting messages left, right and centre, asking when you’re coming back and stuff. It’s tough in that respect, but I’ve had good people around me who have kept me going, [who] motivate me every day, and I motivate myself to know that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.

“[I'd like to say thanks] especially to the rehab and S and C [strength and conditioning] guys. I’m constantly with them every day, and trying to strengthen any weak parts and do general conditioning, so it’s been really good.”

Like everybody else, Axel is looking forward to seeing new signing Edinson Cavani and appreciates he will be tough to mark in training, just like our no.9 Anthony Martial.

“I always like coming up against talented players,” he stressed. “Over the last, you could say, 12 months I’ve had Anthony to deal with and it’s been a blast, as he’s unbelievable in training.

“It’s what you want to come up against – the best – to improve your own abilities. Edinson will be another addition to that with his experience, his knowledge of the game and it’ll be great to learn from him, any smart traits and how to mark someone of his calibre.”

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