Axel Tuanzebe could emerge as a West Ham target this summer, an Irons insider has claimed…
According to the ever-reliable ExWHUemployee, the Manchester United defender is someone that Hammers boss David Moyes likes and a potential loan-to-buy deal could happen if the club does not land other targets.
Speaking on a recent episode of ‘The West Ham Way’ podcast, he said:
“Speaking of Manchester United, it’s been confirmed that Axel Tuanzebe is available on loan.
“Now I do know that David Moyes likes him, so he could be someone who we potential look to loan with a clause to buy – that’s if we don’t get our other targets.”
Indeed, it’s thought that the 23-year-old centre-back will request a loan move away from Old Trafford this off-season in order to gain regular first-team minutes.
It could be argued that signing defensive reinforcements is a low priority at the London Stadium right now but Moyes could soon have a shortage of options, with Fabian Balbuena leaving next week as well as the futures of Issa Diop and Winston Reid in doubt.
That could leave the Scot with just Craig Dawson and Angelo Ogbonna as his only two recognised centre-backs, and both are in this thirties.
At just 23, Tuanzebe could prove to be an interesting solution, particularly if it’s initially on loan as it would save the Irons plenty of funds that could be used to bolster other areas.
Despite being highly rated by the Red Devils’ hierarchy, the 6 foot 1 defender has been restricted to only 37 appearances since his debut in January 2017.
He’s gone out on loan before, winning promotion to the Premier League at Aston Villa, but he has still struggled to find a way past the likes of Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly in the pecking order.
The £7.2m-rated gem is versatile enough to play at right-back and in midfield too, drawing comparisons to ex-Bayern star Javi Martinez, though it is his comparisons to a former Hammer that is even more exciting.
It’s thought that Tuanzebe could go on to become Man Utd’s next Rio Ferdinand, a player who started his career in East London.
Last season, the former England U21 international drew high praise from his manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after a particularly emphatic display against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.
“It’s an unbelievable performance by him. He’s only trained for a couple of weeks and he’s absolutely spot on,” claimed the Norweigen to the club’s official website.
“Axel’s a tremendous defender, a great leader. He’s come through the Academy and we’ve known for years that he’s going to be a top player for us and he’s got the character and the attitude that a Man United player should have.”
Given the likely central defensive situation at the club heading into pre-season, Moyes would be crazy to not try and push for Tuanzebe on loan. He could be a bargain fix to a likely problem.
AND in other news, ExWHUemployee drops gutting transfer claim that’ll leave fans GUTTED…