Little over a month ago, Aaron Wan-Bissaka was a name that barely registered within the minds of the football watching public but after a string of incredibly impressive performances in the Crystal Palace back four, the 20-year-old now finds himself being called up to England’s U20 side for the first time.
Thrown into the first-team out of necessity rather than pure choice by Roy Hodgson given the injury crisis that was engulfing the team just three weeks ago, Aaron did a sterling job up against Tottenham in what was his Premier League debut, wowing those of both a partisan and neutral persuasion over the course of his first competitive 90 minute stint in the Palace side.
Unsurprisingly, Wan-Bissaka retained his place on the right-hand side of defence for the visit of Manchester United, a decision no doubt aided by the ineligibility of loanee Timothy Fosu-Mensah on the night. Incredibly, Aaron managed to embrace the sudden praise he’d been given against Spurs and produce an even more eye-catching performance against the second-placed Reds. Tasked with keeping the likes of Alexis Sanchez and Marcus Rashford quiet, Aaron didn’t wilt under the pressure, instead turning in the sort of display which forced people from across the game to sit up and take notice.
Picked for the third week in a row to start against defending Champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Wan-Bissaka passed every test laid out in front of him with flying colours, leading to this unexpected but thoroughly deserved call-up into the U20 England set-up.
Now set to be involved in Keith Downing’s plans for games against Poland and Portugal before the end of March, Aaron is understandably full of confidence, hoping above all else that he can keep his place in the Palace side ahead of what is a massive game against Huddersfield this weekend.
Should he and his teammates return to south London with all three points, the full-back will be heading off on England duty feeling as though he’s truly made a mark on the footballing stage.
A month is a long time in football.