Manchester United has found an exciting loan move for Axel Tuanzebe with the defender set to join Napoli until the end of the season after United confirmed the termination of his initial loan spell at Aston Villa.
The move will be a straightforward loan deal with no option to buy. Napoli will pay the Reds a fee of £500,000 for the 24-year-olds services. The move opens up an opportunity for Tuanzebe to gain valuable first-team experience and play alongside one of Europe’s top defenders in Kalidou Koulibaly.
Senior members of staff at United were not happy with his spell at Villa with Tuanzebe only playing a total of eight minutes under new manager Steven Gerrard. Napoli expressed their interest in late December and United was keen to terminate the defender’s loan spell and hand him more playing time in Italy.
The move to Italy can only be seen as a positive – with Tuanzebe likely to be a starter due to Napoli’s center-back situation. Kostas Manolas recently departed back to Greece to play for Olympiakos.
Back in August, Tuanzebe moved on loan to Villa for a second time after playing an integral part in the Villans’ promotion in 2019. However, this season he has not featured much with him only playing nine games in the Premier League.
The loan move will provide Tuanzebe a chance to play in a highly competitive league with Napoli battling it out with Inter Milan and AC Milan for the scudetto. Napoli will be hoping that the 24-year-old hits the ground running with the Naples-based side hoping to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Tuanzebe’s standout game was against a star-studded PSG side where he managed to keep Kylian Mbappe and Neymar at bay. However, after that performance in the Champions League, he rarely featured for United with Solskjaer reluctant to use the defender hence his initial loan move to Villa.
Tuanzebe will be hoping that he can perform to a high level in Serie A to give himself the best chance of starting for Manchester United when he returns at the start of next season.
All in all, it should be a successful loan move for Tuanzebe which will give him the experience he needs to become a starter for United.