Manchester United coach blown away by Anthony Elanga's commitment

Anthony Elanga may have moved up to the Manchester United first team but he has left an everlasting impression on the club’s academy coaches.

Prior to Ralf Rangnick’s arrival as interim boss, Elanga’s only appearances for the first team this season came in the Carabao Cup defeat to West Ham where Ole Gunnar Solskjaer brought him on with 17 minutes remaining.

The humble Sweden under-21 international’s fortunes have completely transformed under the German and he is now a permanent fixture in the first team.

Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images

Although the 19-year-old has successfully broken into the first team, Travis Binnion, the club’s under-18s lead coach, has heralded the example Elanga has set to the club’s youngsters.

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Binnion’s under-18s side face Wolves tonight in the FA Youth Cup semi-final and he has shared the levels of commitment Elanga showed earlier in the season when playing in the UEFA Youth League.

Photo by Joe Prior/Visionhaus via Getty Images

Speaking to the Athletic, Binnion said: “He’s a fantastic example for these players. He’s only just gone across to be with the first team so he’s still always around with us — and his mates.

“When we played Atalanta in the Youth League, we had to meet at Carrington at 6am to be at the airport an hour later. Anthony got to Carrington at 4am and went in the gym and we saw him stretching and exercising.

“One of the coaches arrived at 4.45am and couldn’t believe his eyes. He did this for every round because he felt he had to do his usual prep, regardless of what time it was.

“That stuck with me. He’s a really good kid who loves football.”

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Binnion also highlighted how Elanga was willing to go above and beyond for the club’s youngsters when the national was placed into lockdown due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Binnion added: “During lockdown, our 13, 14 or 15-year-old players were doing interviews with players including Anthony, who was further down his development path.

“He couldn’t do enough for them.”

It was only last month that Rangnick said after Elanga’s crucial equaliser in Madrid that he wishes more United players would follow the Swede’s lead.

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Passionate Football fan that completed a NCTJ-accredited Diploma in Multimedia Sports Journalism in 2016.