Tuanzebe: We want to be like the Class of '92
Axel Tuanzebe wants Manchester United’s current crop of youngsters to form the foundation of the club over the coming years.
In a Google Hangout with fellow Academy graduate Brandon Williams, the centre-back cited a famous example from the Reds’ past when discussing just how big an impact Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s homegrown group could have at Old Trafford.
“It's just like the Class of 92, that’s something we've been wanting to replicate,” Axel told us. “This group of lads now that we have coming through, the oldest being Andreas [Pereira] and Scott [McTominay], the youngest being Angel [Gomes], Jimmy [James Garner], Brandon and Mase [Mason Greenwood], that bunch there can build the new foundation for the club.
“We have the club's identity installed in us. We help portray that identity to foreign players and help teach them the way of our club and to become better people, better players.
“It's something that's been the club's identity for many, many years and I'm sure there'll be more players to come through.”
One product who has broken into the side this season is fearless full-back Williams.
The 19-year-old made his club debut at the end of September and has appeared 26 times for United, so far.
“Yeah I think it's special,” Brandon replied, when asked about that stat. “When you’re in the Academy, you talk about it, you laugh about it.
“You all have a dream and to be doing it at the same time with each other, it makes it more special.”
In a 20-minute episode, which you can watch above, the pair analysed our historical Champions League success over Paris Saint-Germain from March 2019.
Five Academy graduates were involved in that game, while for Williams, it was a first experience of a first-team trip abroad with United, even if he didn’t make the matchday squad.
Axel, who was on loan at Aston Villa at the time, believes that magical night at the Parc des Princes just proves how special our production line is.
“It speaks for itself, really. For so many boys to be involved in a Champions League game away from home, I don't think it’s really been done.
“The talent coming through is overwhelming. A lot are playing first-team football now, and a lot of them are capable of going to other teams in the Premier League and playing first-team football.
“So I think our Academy is very strong and obviously there’s just more to come.”
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