Axel Tuanzebe has signed a new four-year contract with Manchester United which will keep him at the club until 2020 and has the option to extend by a further year.
Tuanzebe, 19, made his senior Man United debut last week against Wigan Athletic to cap off a superb 12 months of progress which all started when Louis van Gaal included him in his matchday squad away at Crystal Palace last season.
Having captained our U18s and shone in the U23s, Tuanzebe is a prospect many United fans are excited to see implemented into the senior side and speaking about his new contract Tuanzebe admitted he was delighted to have signed it.
He said: “I have always been a Manchester United supporter so I am naturally delighted to have signed a new contract. To make my debut at Old Trafford in the FA Cup was a very proud moment, both for me and for my family.
“I am learning every day in training and it is also a great experience for me to now train with the first team. I would like to thank all of the coaches that I have worked with and I would especially like to thank the manager for giving me my debut for this great club.”
Jose Mourinho was effusive in his praise of Tuanzebe and made it clear how impressed he has been with Tuanzebe’s transition into the first-team environment.
“Axel is a young player with great potential,” Mourinho added.
“We brought him up to the first team to give him more experience and he has adapted really well. I am pleased that he has signed a new contract and I am delighted with the progress he is making.”
A new #MUFC contract for Axel Tuanzebe!
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) February 2, 2017
Tuanzebe is a class act and a natural defensive leader. Alongside RoShaun Williams with United’s U18s, he helped us go over 500 consecutive minutes without conceding a goal and those qualities helped him with an accelerated progression through the ranks to the point where Mourinho gave him his senior debut.
Mourinho is not a man who has a reputation for not playing young players but the development of Tuanzebe and return of Joel Pereira from his loan spell in Portugal which allowed both players to make their debut is an exciting sign for United fans.
United need a new centre-back to bolster our squad going into next season but could that option already exist within the club in Tuanzebe? A new contract is certainly indicative of a real belief in the 19-year-old and I’m delighted he’s been rewarded for his progress and hard work. Well done Axel!