African All Stars

Hannibal Mejbri: ‘Make him captain’ rave Man United fans

20:36 EAT 20/04/2022
Hannibal Mejbri Liverpool vs Man Utd Premier League 2021-22
During a dreadful evening for the Red Devils, there was one stand-out performer

by Joel Omotto

Manchester United youngster Hannibal Mejbri has earned high praise for his performance against Liverpool, despite only coming on in the 84th minute, as the Red Devils lost 4-0 at Anfield on Tuesday.

Fans were thrilled by the commitment shown by the 19-year-old Tunisian, praising him for showing more fight than the rest of the squad, who were passive and looked disinterested as Liverpool made a meal of them.

Mejbri flew into tackles while showing vigour immediately after coming on for Anthony Elanga, earning him a yellow card but fans were happy that he showed what had lacked from the team and even named him their man-of-the-match, despite the few minutes he had on the pitch.

"It takes a young kid to come on to show them how to sprint and put a challenge in. I'm actually proud of him," United legend Gary Neville led the praise, while doing commentary for the match on Sky Sports, and a number of fans in Africa agree with him.

“Mejbri deserves to play the rest of the games, wish Bruno [Fernandes] got sent off,” said @Kealannnn, who would not mind the young midfielder being given playing time for the rest of the season.

“Nothing wrong with Bruno, Mejbri should be starting ahead of Jogba [Pogba],” said @Mirabell-Ella.

@VIVARONALDOOO believes Mejbri is the only player who covered himself in glory during the unhappy outing.

“The only one that can leave not embarrassed,” he said, with @Mark1663 in agreement: “Start him for the rest of the season. Would rather see him than Pogba any day #hannibalin.”

Will Ralf Rangnick agree with these supporters and give Mejbri more playing time as United’s season runs out of steam?

“Play Hannibal and [Alejandro] Garnacho till season end. We have nothing to lose anyway,” added @VictorTchidi, who also agrees.

“A kid has shown more fight than a million-pound, thousand pound a week players in two minutes,” commented @JacobJarvis20.

However, some felt the midfielder did nothing special.

“He did well but he could also have gotten a red. The game was finished already, I don’t think he would have had a huge impact if he started,” said @dejiborewa.

@TommyViceCityy was more brutal in his assessment of Mejbri. He said: “He lost the ball on the 4-0 and almost got a useless red card. Kid brought nothing bar long hairs.”

However, @TEMITOPEOYELAD wants to see youngsters given a chance in the United team going forward, after the Tunisian’s display.

“Nothing to watch again with the first team set of lazy players. Let's see the audition with the young players beginning from the next match,” he said.

“#Hannibal is an example of all we expect as #MUFC fans. Passion, drive, hunger, guts and the heart to play for the club,” said @Oluwade.

@MKola would not even mind Mejbri as United captain: “Give Hannibal the armband,” he said with @vintageredss in agreement, “Might as well make Hannibal captain for the rest of the season. At least he hates them [Liverpool] as much as we do.”

Tuesday night was the first Premier League appearance of the season for the United academy graduate, who represented Tunisia’s Carthage Eagles at the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year.