The 22-year-old is knocking on the door of the England team with his performances at Old Trafford, particularly in the defensive half
Manchester United’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka says his time playing winger as a youth has helped him become one of the Premier League’s best defenders.
Wan-Bissaka, signed from Crystal Palace over the summer for £50 million ($63m), has been one of the bright spots of United’s season, rarely beaten in one-on-ones with opposition wingers.
After only making his Premier League debut in 2018, it has been a whirlwind year for the 22-year-old – and he says the shift backwards from a right-wing position was key.
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“It has gone so quick, such a short space of time, but I’m happy with the chance I was given in that position. I don’t regret it,” he told the Daily Mail.
“But the change hasn’t been massive to me. I always had that defensive mindset when I was an attacker.
“I used to love tackling as well. When I played right wing, left wingers would beat the right back and I’d be recovering and getting the tackles in. That’s where it really started.
“Because I’ve been in a winger’s position I know how to think at times. Where you see space down the line you take it. That’s what I like to give them.
“I don’t like anything going past me. Anything. And I like to keep it that way.”
Perhaps Wan-Bissaka’s most impressive performance for United to date came in the 2-1 Manchester derby win over Manchester City in December.
Up against City’s Raheem Sterling, Wan-Bissaka shackled the England winger effectively throughout.
“I knew it was going to be a long game,” Wan-Bissaka admitted.
“He is one of the best wingers in the Premier League and I knew I had to step up my game.
“It’s a good feeling, especially a player like him with his ability. It took real concentration because he can go in or out and has got pace.
“He’s probably faster than me so that was a game I had to really focus on and actually go hard at it.
“Was that the toughest battle of my career? Yes, but since my debut with Crystal Palace [against Tottenham] no winger is going to be easy.
“It’s going to be a challenge every game and they are only going to get harder with the better players you come up against.”