Wan-Bissaka thankful for Zaha lessons
Aaron Wan-Bissaka's first assignment as a right-back was marking Wilfried Zaha in training at Crystal Palace and he believes it stood him in good stead for his future Premier League career.
Manchester United's 2019 summer signing from Thursday's Premier League opponents faced his former club at Old Trafford early in the campaign, when the south Londoners ran out shock 2-1 victors.
Much has happened since then, on and off the pitch, with Wan-Bissaka proving to be an astute capture and helping United continue the long unbeaten run after lockdown.
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Ahead of his first return to Selhurst Park, the full-back told us that it was an education marking ex-Red Zaha in training and having to think on his feet against the tricky wide man.
"It's going to be a bit strange, you know, as I have not been back in a while," he said. "Especially without there being any fans there, it will be a new experience but we want to go there and get the victory.
“Palace mean a lot to me. They are the team that brought me through the system and, without them, I don't think I'd be here. They've given me chances to show what I am capable of doing.
“I wasn't a full-back," he added. "I came in, at 11 or 12, as a striker and went to play on the wing. Then it started from a training session when someone had to fill in at right-back. Training against Wilf, I think he sort of prepared me for what it is like playing in the Premier League.
“I learned a lot from him. He's an unpredictable player and tests like that are ones that made me a better player.
“I'm still in touch with a few players at the club and the staff. However, it's literally up to us to take every game step by step, stay together and work together to come out with a good result."
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer certainly believes Wan-Bissaka has had a first campaign with the club that he can be proud of.
"He’s had a rollercoaster of a season and a year," the boss told us in his exclusive pre-match interview. "It’s been like that for everyone, to be fair, but this is his first season at Man United. I think he’s learnt a lot about himself and about the club and about what’s required at the highest level. He’s had a great season."
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