Crystal Palace full-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka was on sparkling form during his return to the starting XI away at Burnley last weekend, with boss Roy Hodgson adamant that the speculation linking him with Manchester United hasn’t fazed the 21-year-old in the slightest.
It may be just over a year since the Palace academy graduate made his first-team debut but it hasn’t stopped a wide array of clubs throwing their hat into the ring as potential suitors for him this summer. So far, the likes of Manchester City, Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea, Everton, Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich have all declared an interest and now it seems Ole Gunner Solskjær’s Reds have entered the race too.
As things stand, Palace are far from keen to let one of their crown jewels fly the nest but should one of the above clubs offer £50 million or more, it may prove difficult for the board to stand in Aaron’s way. Whilst I don’t doubt Wan-Bissaka’s ability, there is a danger in him leaving the club too soon in his development as a pro and consequently struggling to adapt to new surroundings. In SE25, the players, coaches and fans all see him like a little brother but the moment you leave for a super-club with a transfer fee as big as his inevitably would be, the pressure to perform is both intense and immediate.
Clearly, as Roy Hodgson has said, the talk hasn’t stopped him from producing the goods in red and blue and long may that continue. The club really have found a diamond in the youth ranks; it makes you wonder how many more are hiding down there.