It seemed typical of Manchester United that first bid for Aaron Wan-Bissaka was tabled just as he was about to leave for international duty with the England Under-21s.

Luke Shaw informed Southampton within moments of their season ending he wanted to join United in 2014 - a World Cup year - and the golden rule with tournament participants is to sign them up before the tournament.

Unfortunately for Wan-Bissaka, amid the speculation and scrutiny, he wilted and scored a late own goal winner for France to set the tone for England's winless group stage.

Wan-Bissaka was dropped by Aidy Boothroyd for the next two matches and his replacement, Jonjoe Kenny, scored spectacularly against Croatia. It would have been typical of United had the sudden change in fortune dissuaded them from finalising a deal for a player they prioritised over a centre half.

As United put it, Crystal Palace 'dug in' to obtain a larger fee up front. That was always the sticking point in negotiations and it was falsely reported last week United had agreed an initial £47million, plus add-ons to make it £55m.

Word then got out United were prepared to walk away and resort to a fall-back option, much like they did with Nathaniel Clyne and Matteo Darmian four years ago. Money talks and Palace yielded. They will get £45m minimum, with £5m in add-ons.

 

United are delighted with the overall figure, mindful of the transfer market inflation since the 2017 window. Wan-Bissaka's age, nationality, ability, Premier League experience and contract length at Palace could have taken the up-front fee north of £50m for a club lacking a stellar right-back. It is not a frugal fee and United are paying at least £26m more for a right-back after triggering Diogo Dalot's £19m release clause last year.

Still, it was Dalot and Darmian or Dalot and Wan-Bissaka. Now United are about to possess two specialist - and selectable - right-backs for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson was in post. Darmian might finally be sold.

 

United have copped deserved kickings for some of their transfer market movement in recent years but negotiating a deal for Wan-Bissaka before July is laudable business. Unlike Daniel James, he is known to Premier League viewers and was always going to command a lofty fee in the market. United are also always taxed by virtue of being United.

Take their interest in Bruno Fernandes. United's return to the Portuguese market in recent years has served them respectably via Dalot and Victor Lindelof and other Premier League clubs have had excellent returns for Portuguese players. Wolves paid £16m for Ruben Neves, £12m for Diogo Jota and £5m for Joao Moutinho. The right-back Ricardo Pereira cost Leicester £22m and Everton have just spent the same amount on Andre Gomes.

 

The prospect of United being quoted double £22m for Fernandes is fanciful. Clubs have been taking them for a ride all summer - as one agency insider put it - and Palace were holding out for a higher fee for Wan-Bissaka. They might feel short-changed.

Kyle Walker was a vastly more experienced and established right-back at the time of his £54m switch from Tottenham to Manchester City in 2017 and United figures felt that deal distorted the market. Given Wan-Bissaka is about to move for £9m less - initially - it represents something of a financial victory for United at a time where the silly season has seldom been sillier. They were quoted £75million for Harry Maguire last year.

How United could look vs Leeds on July 13
How United could look vs Leeds on July 13

Wan-Bissaka is not exactly a coup - he is United's most expensive defender having played 48 career games - and the France farce was a startling indicator of how quickly a player can crumble in a pressure cooker environment. Wan-Bissaka has been devoid of expectation at Palace - a club always clear of the relegation quagmire but always outside the top 10.

United had a free run at Wan-Bissaka and got so far down the line had the move collapsed it would have marked another window catastrophe. Instead, they have refreshed a stagnant area of their squad with another young and enthusiastic right winger.

That is not typical of United.