Sat. Nov 28th, 2020

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How Man United staff reacted to Axel Tuanzebe performance vs PSG

2 min read

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Axel Tuanzebe ‘almost surprised’ the Manchester United staff with the standard of his performance in the win over Paris Saint-Germain.

Tuanzebe, 22, was recalled for his first appearance since the League Cup quarter-final against Colchester on December 19 and was outstanding in United’s 2-1 Champions League group stage victory.

Solskjaer was forced to start Tuanzebe in a back three with Victor Lindelof and Luke Shaw as fellow centre halves Harry Maguire and Eric Bailly are injured. Bailly is expected to be out until after the November internationals with a muscular injury.

Tuanzebe’s stunning return, as well as another lay-off for Bailly, are likely to result in more chances for the United academy graduate after his superb display against Kylian Mbappe.


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“Axel did fantastic,” Solskjaer said. “He’s been out since the last game against Colchester, 10 months or something? To put up a performance like this against Neymar and Mbappe… I have to say he almost surprised us as well.

“We know he’s a good player but on a night like this, he was fantastic. We might see this system again, of course, we have had some good games in it.”

United took a first-half lead through another Bruno Fernandes penalty but an Anthony Martial own goal levelled the match early in the second-half. Solskjaer sent Paul Pogba on for the last quarter and the Frenchman’s presence signalled a momentum shift that was crowned by Marcus Rashford’s winner.

Solskjaer oversaw a seminal win at PSG as the United caretaker manager but insisted their performance on Tuesday night was superior.

“It’s a better performance this time than last, even though we won 3-1,” Solskjaer added. “The performance this time, we showed we have developed.

“Scott [McTominay] and Fred were outstanding. We know when we go here against players and a team like this with players like Neymar and Mbappe we have to defend well and David [de Gea] will have to make a few good saves.”

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