Alex Telles opens up on Old Trafford rivalry with Luke Shaw

Matthew Briggs
Alex Telles TEAMtalk

Manchester United left-back Alex Telles says his left-back rival at Old Trafford Luke Shaw has “made great progress” this season.

Shaw has been one of United’s best players this term, displaying form which has seen him recalled to the England set-up. The 25-year-old started the win over Albania too, while Ben Chilwell was the pick against San Marino and Poland. It’s a situation that will delight Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who decided to land Telles last summer from Porto.

Telles arrived in October for an initial fee of £13.6m, but contracted Covid-19 in November which impacted his start at the club. 

That allowed Shaw to establish himself again at left-back and such has been his form, Telles has been left with only seven Premier League appearances.

The Brazilian though has been far from downbeat and says Shaw’s displays have been driving on the whole squad.

“I’ve always said that, when you’ve got players of the highest quality in the team, then the thing that ends up benefiting is Manchester United; the team,” Telles told the club’s website.

“Since I’ve arrived here, I’ve worked as hard as I can and I’ve done everything I can to show that I deserve to be here. I think I’ve done that.

“At the same time, I’m really happy for Luke Shaw, who has made great progress and has been playing really well. He trains really well and he’s done excellently in the matches as well.


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“When you’ve got a situation like that, then the team can only benefit from it. And it’s Man United that wins from that [situation].

“In terms of the two of us, we both motivate each other and push each other further forward. We help each other. That’s really, really important throughout the team, independent of the positions we play.”

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Solskjaer looking for ‘spark’ from star 

Meanwhile, United boss Solskjaer feels hopeful that Paul Pogba’s return from injury can help his team rediscover their “spark”.

This season, Pogba has largely bucked the trend of his previous campaigns at Old Trafford by becoming a crucial player.

The Frenchman enjoyed arguably his best form in a Red Devils shirt before a recent injury. Indeed, he won his team six Premier League points with goals against Fulham and Burnley, respectively.

What’s more, he announced his return from a thigh injury with the winner over AC Milan in the Europa League.

As such, he has used the recent international break to regain further fitness.

Therefore, his manager says that he has come back from country duty full of motivation to end the season on a high.

“It’ll be a massive boost. He’s come back bright and he’s ready to go,” Solskjaer told reporters (via the Manchester Evening News).

“We know how important he will be for us and how important he has been.

“To have players of his quality out for longer periods, that just shows the quality of the others as well.

“But towards the end of the season now, having Paul back fit and getting our forwards back firing again, hopefully we can get that spark and score more goals again.”

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