Pre-season is over and for all the positives like Anthony Martial and Jadon Sancho, there are losers from the first few weeks of Erik ten Hag’s reign too.

The player who will be most disappointed is Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who will have very different memories from his first and previous pre-season tour.

When Wan-Bissaka joined the club in 2019, he was a breath of fresh air, becoming one of the first signings of the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reign, and joining United in Australia on tour.

He quickly became a hit, impressive with his tackling ability, showing a defensive resilience which had been lacking, with United fans tired of seeing Ashley Young at right-back. But the novelty has worn off.

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Future looks bleak for Aaron Wan-Bissaka

After a solid first season at United, Wan-Bissaka has not been able to show enough improvement to live up to the £50 million fee the club paid.

His attacking play has frequently been below par, with United’s attack often breaking down along his side, and the team becoming too predictable and lop-sided with a preference to play down the left.

This isn’t entirely his fault, but Wan-Bissaka has generally been a player whose opponents are happy to see in possession. He finished last season with no assists in 20 Premier League starts.

Defensively, top teams have begun to figure him out too. He has struggled to deal with crosses coming towards his side, and in games against Liverpool and Manchester City last season he was frequently pulled out of position and caught out.

The 24-year-old might have hoped for a fresh star under Erik ten Hag, but it does not look to be forthcoming.

During pre-season he was not selected as a starter once, making only three appearances from the bench for a combined 89 minutes of action.

Both Diogo Dalot and Ethan Laird have played more minutes than Wan-Bissaka, and while the latter could still head out on loan, Wan-Bissaka won’t be a factor in that decision. If Laird is loaned, then it is expected United will pursue another right-back.

Dalot looks to have embedded himself as Erik ten Hag’s first choice, and well deserved. He has been an impressive performer in pre-season. Not perfect, but there’s enough there for the Dutchman to work with.

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United must take a loss

Manchester United will have to accept making a loss on Aaron Wan-Bissaka. Unlike Dan James, signed in the same summer, there is no way the club will be able to sell the player for a profit.

United would be fortunate to get half the £50 million paid for the defender, and his £100,000+ per week wages will also be an added complication.

The best option for United would be a loan move. This way rather than seeing Wan-Bissaka’s market value depreciate further by sitting on the bench, he can go and show himself and rebuild elsewhere.

If he signs for a bottom half of the table team, Wan-Bissaka may shine, with an emphasis on a defensive role rather than an attacking one.

Strong performances on loan could convince clubs he is worth splashing out on, in 2023. With no rush of suitors for his services this summer, a temporary exit looks to be the best option.

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