Rangnick explains Telles's advanced role
Alex Telles has added another string to his bow and proved to manager Ralf Rangnick he can be a new option to call upon for Manchester United.
The Reds were nervously holding on to a slender 1-0 lead and an anxious finale had the Old Trafford crowd biting its nails when interim manager Ralf Rangnick pulled an ace from up his sleeve in the 79th minute by bringing in Telles for Jadon Sancho to help nullify late danger from 10-man Brighton.
It helped United repel the threat after the visitors' boss Graham Potter had brought on substitute right-back Tariq Lamptey in the 59th minute, and provided the former Chelsea youngster with a licence to get forward.
“Their right side with Lamptey was the dangerous side. Lamptey was playing up front, almost as a winger in the last 10-15 minutes,” Rangnick explained in his press conference, when asked about his substitution.
“That is why we decided to bring on Alex Telles - to support Luke Shaw on that side.”
The Brazilian defender, normally operates as a regular left-back, but showed he was able to support Shaw from a more advanced position.
It was Telles' first appearance since January 22 when he played against West Ham United.
He then tested positive for COVID-19, after being away representing Brazil, and had to self-isolate, meaning he was unavailable.
However, against Brighton, he proved his worth operating as a covering wide man on United’s left-hand side as he helped the Reds to a clean sheet and an eventual 2-0 victory.
With Shaw picking up an eighth booking of the season, he is only a couple of yellow cards away from a two-game suspension so will need to tread carefully before the 32nd gameweek when the threshold is raised to 15, with a three-match ban the subsequent punishment.
Feeling very happy for the victory and for reaching the milestone of 400 official games in my career. Thanks to everyone who supported me from the beginning until today! @ManUtd @FCPorto @Inter_en @GalatasaraySK @Gremio @ECJuventude pic.twitter.com/ve6KHaCYS6— Alex Telles (@AT13Oficial) February 16, 2022
Telles's short cameo marked the 400th appearance of his senior career and he took to social media after the game to celebrate the milestone.
Alex made his professional debut for Juventude in January 2011 and played for Gremio, Galatasaray, Internazionale and Porto before joining the Reds in October 2020.