Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer and Manchester United have hit a stumbling block in their pursuit of a replacement right-back for the Red Devils’ backline, but this is a transfer saga that has the potential to dominate 2019’s summer window.
That’s according to reports from Sky Sports, who claim United have had a £40m bid rejected by Crystal Palace for defensive sensation Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
Wan-Bissaka, 21, has shone for the Eagles since rising to first-team prominence under Roy Hodgson in 2018/19, ranking third in the Premier League for tackles (129) behind Wilfred Ndidi (143) and Idrissa Gueye (142).
The Palace youth-product has been in sensational form for Palace, leading to calls for his inclusion in Gareth Southgate’s senior England squad.
But this increased attention has led to Solsjkaer and United making their move for the highly-rated right-back as the Norwegian bids to transform the Red Devils and re-assert their domestic and European relevance.
Palace are currently faced with losing their two biggest talents at the club, in the form of Wan-Bissaka and Wilfried Zaha; with the Ivorian currently attracting renewed interest from Spurs.
If Hodgson’s side are to sell Wan-Bissaka this summer, the South London side are likely to demand a fee in excess of £50m, with United’s current £40m offer falling short of their valuation.
Following a disappointing 6th placed finish and a severe deacceleration of momentum under Solsjkaer in the concluding stages of the 2018/19 campaign, United are in desperate need of impetus to reignite their form and morale, with an £18m move for Swansea’s Daniel James nearing the stages of completion.
If United are able to conclude a deal for Wan-Bissaka, they will be acquiring one of the most promising defensive prospects in the Premier League.
The 21-year-old has the ability to star for both club and country, and Ed Woodward will be hoping that, if a deal can be reached with Palace, the right-back opts to display his talents at Old Trafford in 2019/2020.