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'It's bound to turn your head': Palace defender may be distracted by Man United links

England U21 boss Aidy Boothroyd says Aaron Wan-Bissaka has been affected by speculation over his future.

The defender is on duty with England at the U21 European Championships.
The defender is on duty with England at the U21 European Championships.
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

AARON WAN-BISSAKA is distracted by speculation linking him with a move to Manchester United from Crystal Palace, says England U21 boss Aidy Boothroyd.

Wan-Bissaka is reportedly a transfer target for the Red Devils, but Palace are said to be demanding £50 million for the full-back.

The 21-year-old made 35 Premier League appearances in a breakthrough campaign last term and is on international duty at the European U21 Championship.

Wan-Bissaka’s late own goal contributed to England losing their opening group game 2-1 against France and Boothroyd feels the defender has been affected by talk he could be moving to Old Trafford.

“When that speculation is flying around it’s bound to turn your head,” Boothroyd told reporters.

“For a young player, who all he knows is Crystal Palace, it would be daft not to say that in some way he must think about it.

“He’s disappointed obviously with the way that the own goal turned out.

“With all the noise that’s surrounding him at the minute you can imagine if you and I were in that position we’d probably be a lot different to what he is.

“He’s very calm, he’s very measured, he doesn’t say a great deal but if he plays tomorrow night [against Romania] I’m expecting the same sort of focus, the same sort of energy and I expect him to bounce back.” 

Newcastle United v Crystal Palace - Premier League - St James' Park Wan-Bissaka enjoyed a breakthrough season at Palace. Source: Owen Humphreys

Boothroyd suggested he would not stand in Wan-Bissaka’s way if a move away from Palace could be completed during the tournament.

“It seems like it’s been going on for a long time,” he said of the transfer speculation surrounding Wan-Bissaka. 

“We had a similar situation in Poland last time with [then Sunderland goalkeeper] Jordan Pickford, a lot of speculation.

“Everton agreed the deal they worked very closely with us, they were very respectful in terms of not getting involved in our training and our build-up and in the end it was done – with the medicals in a hotel down the road away from everybody else.

“If that was to happen we certainly wouldn’t be blocking anybody, we’d be talking to people and seeing if we can help out in any way provided both clubs were happy with it. If that happens we’ll oblige and if it doesn’t suit us then we’ll find a time when it does.”

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