Before injury made Axel Tuanzebe miss almost four months of action, he looked an early contender for Villa’s play of the season. The Manchester United loanee is now back at the club and reportedly ready for action. Will Dean Smith put him straight back into the team and can he help us get promoted?
In his absence, Smith recruited the help of Tyrone Mings and Kortney Hause. They have appeared to develop quite the partnership over the last few games. Hause original played out on the left but more injuries saw him move more central. James Chester and Tommy Elphick have picked up injuries meaning Smith didn’t have many other options.
Neil Taylor was bought back into the side and slotted back into left back. The defence does look a lot more solid than it once was. The stats also back this up with just 1 goal conceded in the last 3 games. It brings me to my question, should Smith stick with the current defence or bring Tuanzebe back into the side?
I am of the belief that despite his recent performances, Taylor should be dropped for Tuanzebe. Hause would return to his more natural left back position and Tuanzebe would slot alongside Mings. What a partnership that potentially could be.
They are two fast defenders who are confident on the ball. Neither are shy of making a meaty tackle or carrying the ball out from the defence. Mings often shows a glimpse of him powering his way up the pitch, just as Tuanzebe did before his setback.
Over the past few days, rumours have surfaced in the press that Manchester United would allow Tuanzebe to stay at Villa beyond this season. It would only be a loan deal though and not a permanent one.
Personally, I think that we should make an offer for the young Englishman, especially if we get promoted. United clearly aren’t interested in him, if reports are true. We have nothing to lose by making an offer to take him on a permanent deal.
A back four of Ahmed Elmohammady, Tuanzebe, Mings and Hause is a very exciting prospect. Opponents would have their work cut out and we wouldn’t be easy to score against as we once were.
Do you think Axel Tuanbe should step straight back into the starting line up, or does he have to prove himself again?