Tony Cascarino believes Manchester United star Aaron Wan-Bissaka is a better defender than Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, following his role in Saturday’s 2-1 Manchester derby win.
Speaking in the Times, Cascarino called for England manager Gareth Southgate to play Wan-Bissaka – who is yet to make his full Three Lions debut – in matches against elite, dangerous widemen.
He said: “Watching the Manchester derby, I was struck by one of the most extraordinary defensive performances I have ever seen. Aaron Wan-Bissaka must be the best one-on-one right back in the country – arguably in Europe. [He] handled Raheem Sterling brilliantly. In midweek, Son Heung-min barely got a kick, and Sadio Mané had arguably his quietest game for Liverpool against United.
“Which I think leaves Gareth Southgate with a choice. Trent Alexander-Arnold is much better as an attacking force with raids forward and crosses… a great option against less dangerous opponents, but when it comes to teams that pose a real threat down the left, Southgate has to go with Wan-Bissaka. He is such a hard man to get past.”
TBR’s View – Wan-Bissaka has a tough fight on his hands to make it into the squad
England are blessed with quality right backs now to the extent that back-to-back title winner Kyle Walker has found himself in the cold. Wan-Bissaka hasn’t even made his senior debut yet.
Southgate has seemed reluctant to play Alexander-Arnold in every game, perhaps feeling that he needs a more conservative right back in an England team which is not as good as Liverpool.
But the Scouser has already won the Champions League, with two seasons of outstanding work and Wan-Bissaka has work to do before he gets to that level of consistency yet.
Wan-Bissaka needs to work on his attacking output, while Alexander-Arnold can do more defensively, as highlighted by Jamie Carragher recently. It will be a fascinating battle in the years ahead, but the Liverpool man is in the lead right now.