The defender is on-loan from Manchester United to the end of this season.
Bruce said: "It was a terrific battle.
“I'm delighted for Axel. He tired badly because he need games.
“But you can see his talent because he was excellent for us today on his full debut."
Asked about his best position, Bruce added: “Maybe centre-back. Can he go in midfield? He's got such pace and can carry the ball well.
“You can play anywhere when you're a good player."