(written by Cain Smith)
Last weekend, Manchester United stunned neighbours and league leaders, Manchester City, as they won the derby 2-0 and ended City’s 28-game unbeaten run. Yet again, Aaron Wan-Bissaka shut out Raheem Sterling at the Etihad.
The former-Liverpool winger has been excellent for The Citizen’s, scoring 44 goals and providing 20 assists since the beginning of 2019/20, however, each and every time that City’s number seven has faced Wan-Bissaka, he has failed to influence the game.
Sterling is not the only winger that has struggled against United’s number 29. In fact, multiple top left-wingers have been faulted against Wan-Bissaka. Sadio Mane and Kylian Mbappe are two world-class players who also lost-out in their duel against the former-Crystal Palace man.
Wan-Bissaka, though, is yet to receive an England cap and there is speculation that he could change his elegance to the Republic of Congo.
Although, right-back is, as Gareth Southgate said, ‘an area where we [England] are blessed’, with such talents as Trent Alexander-Arnold, Kyle Walker and Reece James. it is undeniable that the Man United man offers something that no other option can offer.
He is arguably the best defensive full-back in one-on-one situations in Europe. If England are going to get to the latter stages of the Euros in the summer, they are going to have to face some top teams and also some world-class left-wingers.
Alexander Arnold will likely start on the right-side, but it is known that the Liverpool player is questionable in defensive situations. This is why Wan-Bissaka could be a great tool for Southgate in the summer, as if England progress through the competition, being able to have a full-back who can shut out top quality wingers is a wonderful asset to have.
It is most definitely a difficult decision for the England manager, with so much talent in many positions, no one would like to have the responsibility of choosing the squad this summer (we gave it a try though).
According to FBRef, Wan-Bissaka has won 44 tackles so far in the Premier League, more than any full-back in England this season – his ability to tackle a man in situations where it seems near impossible to get the ball has led to his nickname being ‘the spider’.
Southgate should really be considering bringing ‘the spider’ into his squad, even though he is yet to be capped, as Wan-Bissaka could be secret weapon for England this summer.