Elanga reacts to making international bow
Manchester United winger Anthony Elanga earned his first senior appearance for Sweden last night in their narrow 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic in the World Cup qualifying play-off semi-final.
The 19-year-old joined the action in extra time, just minutes after Robin Quaison had broken the deadlock for the home side.
And despite only playing five minutes, Elanga quickly showed glimpses of the blistering pace and fearless running that has so endeared him to the United supporters, as the hosts saw the game out and progressed to the play-off final.
Sweden now face a trip to Poland on Tuesday to determine who will earn a place in Qatar for the winter competition from Path B, while Elanga’s club teammates Cristiano Ronaldo, Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Dalot host North Macedonia in the Path C final.
The 19-year-old took to social media to share his pride in reaching another personal landmark, writing 'Debut. Win. One step closer to our goal!!!'
Making his international debut is yet another impressive achievement in what has already been a whirlwind breakthrough season for Elanga.
The Academy graduate has made 18 appearances in all competitions for the Reds so far this term, scoring three times in the process.
Perhaps the most memorable of his goals was his second-half equaliser away to Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the Champions League round-of-16, where having joined the action as a substitute, Elanga hauled United level when he broke in behind and calmly slotted beyond Jan Oblak.
Under interim boss Ralf Rangnick the now full international has established himself as a first-team regular and has been lauded for his bravery and hunger.
After that first-leg draw in Madrid, Rangnick said: “He is playing as though it is a dream come true, it is a joy and fun to watch him play.”
Sweden and United team-mate Victor Lindelof shared his congratulations for Elanga on his Instagram story, posing for a photograph with his club teammate in the changing room after the win in Stockholm.
The future is certainly bright for Elanga, and having reached another personal milestone last night, he will hope his side can overcome Poland on Tuesday to progress to the winter World Cup in Qatar.