Anthony Elanga back in the gym already preparing for the 2022/23 season
Manchester United’s season is finally over and you could not blame some of the players for wanting to get as far away from Manchester as possible.
But as Scott McTominay pointed out last week, it’s hard for the players to relax this summer, knowing they are all going to be fighting for their futures under Erik ten Hag when they return.
Ten Hag was unveiled by Manchester United on Monday, with the manager starting work and pledging to make his own decisions on players’ futures.
Anthony Elanga made his breakthrough into the first team this season, and he is not wasting any time in starting preparations for the 2022/23 season.
Elanga back in the gym already
Anthony Elanga is back in the gym already, starting work on his fitness work, just one day after the 2021/22 season finished.
Elanga shared an image on Instagram from the gym, writing, ‘Back in the lab’, and he can be seen in the mirror if you look closely.
Elanga’s attitude can’t be faulted. Former bosses Ralf Rangnick and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer have both lauded his mentality, and his work rate is not in question.
With Sweden not qualifying for the World Cup, there could be a time for a break at the end of the year for Elanga, if he chooses to work now. Erik ten Hag has confirmed the players are due back at pre-season training on June 27, in just over a month.
The excitement over Elanga’s emergence into the team at the start of 2022, has faded somewhat.
After his important goal away at Atletico Madrid in February, his third of the season, Elanga failed to hit the back of the net since.
While he added a couple of assists, Elanga’s impact in front of goal just wasn’t there, and was summed up with a wild swing at a chance on the final day against Palace, with a second half effort which missed the target and never came close.
It can’t have been easy for him, as a 20-year-old playing in a side bereft of direction and conviction, and by the end his performances really suffered for it. Now he hopes to have a fresh start.
Erik ten Hag has a proven track record of developing young players, and Elanga will hope to make an impact under him, even if he is only initially a back-up player.
Playing regularly in the Premier League has been a big test, and Elanga will know some of the areas he has to improve physically, to be ready for the challenges ahead.
Then if he can listen and enact what Erik ten Hag asks of him, then he has a chance. The jury remains out whether he will be a Manchester United player in the long run, but he has a good chance to be involved next season, and try to grow under the new boss.
Elanga back in the gym already shows he has the right mindset. While a mental break with a holiday is also useful, it won’t be a surprise to see a few more of Manchester United’s players follow suit, the ones who care at least.