What Old Trafford means to Aaron Wan-Bissaka
Manchester United defender Aaron Wan-Bissaka made his 100th Premier League appearance for the club during Sunday’s meeting with Southampton at Old Trafford.
Although he no doubt would have liked three points to go with it, Aaron was able to bring up a landmark day in the same arena that he made his first league appearance for United, back in August 2019.
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After joining from Crystal Palace that summer, Wan-Bissaka debuted in the Reds’ memorable 4-0 win over Chelsea in M16 on the opening day of the Premier League season.
It was the first time as a United player that our no.29 experienced the place he now calls home, and speaking in our ‘My Old Trafford’ series earlier this season, Aaron described his first impressions of the Theatre of Dreams on that delightful August day.
“The atmosphere, the size, the noise that the fans make when you come out the tunnel [stood out],” he told club media.
“[It was] the happiest moment for me, a debut and that kind of score in that game.”
Our defender had played at Old Trafford before that day, on the opposing team however, during his days with Crystal Palace.
The Eagles came away from M16 with a 0-0 draw in the season prior to Aaron’s move, and he recalled what it was like to come to the stadium as an away player in the Premier League.
“There’s a big difference [to playing at Old Trafford for United],” he added.
“When you’re an away team coming here, it’s different. You know the stadium is not cheering for you, they’re cheering for United, so it’s you against the whole stadium. It’s difficult to get into the game quite early.
“I remember coming here for the first time and the nerves kicked in. But, especially playing against a team like United, it felt good [to come away with something].”
Aaron’s appearance in Sunday’s draw was his 51st of the century to be played on home soil, and was against the same opponents that he scored his first Old Trafford goal for United against, in Southampton.
The full-back netted the second of his two United strikes – the other scored away to Newcastle earlier in the pandemic-affected 2020/21 Premier League campaign – in our record-equalling 9-0 win over the Saints and, reading between the lines, we sense he’s eager to get that first strike in front of our supporters under his belt sometime soon.
“It was just a shame there was no fans to celebrate it with!”
Here’s to Aaron’s first goal in front of our supporters coming soon, and plenty more Premier League appearances for him in the red shirt of United!