Erik ten Hag has provided a fitness update over Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe.

Tuanzebe returned to first team training this week, for the first time since leaving the pre-season tour in July.

He had been working individually at Carrington prior to this, and while his training return is a step forward, a first team comeback is not imminent.

Ten Hag told the club website that Tuanzebe is ‘weeks away’ from being able to play matches.

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Manchester United Training Session
Photo by John Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images

Ten Hag give Tuanzebe update

Ten Hag is satisfied the defender is making progress, steadily, and admitted the gruelling recovery had been tough.

The manager clarified: “Axel, it was a long time that he was not available for matches or for training. Individual rehab was really hard for him.

“Then, you can understand, it takes time; back in training as well, and in team training, then you have to build up. So that will take weeks.”

Jadon Sancho also returned to training a week ago, and while Ten Hag did not say he is a long way off playing game like Tuanzebe, he did explain that he is not quite ready yet.

He said: “They are not available yet for games but they are progressing.”

The manager also added that Diogo Dalot and Anthony Martial are making recoveries from their injuries, adding: “They are back, on track, and they are progressing.”

Neither player are available for tonight’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg away at Nottingham Forest.

Tuanzebe has not played for Manchester United since 2021, spending last season out on loan at Aston Villa and then Napoli, with his spell in Italy ruined by injury.

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