Following intense negotiations, AS Roma are finally thought to have struck a deal with Manchester United over the permanent purchase of Chris Smalling.
English international Smalling has been on the books of Premier League giants United since 2010.
However, on the back of Harry Maguire’s big-money arrival from Leicester City last summer, Smalling was deemed surplus to requirements by Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
As such, following weeks of speculation, the 30-year-old departed Old Trafford for Serie A outfit AS Roma at the end of August.
Smalling made the move to the Stadio Olimpico on loan for the 2019/20 campaign.
Man United man impressing
And, after struggling for game-time over the early weeks of his stint in the Italian capital, Smalling has since gone on to establish himself as an integral member of the Giallorossi’s backline.
The stopper has notched starts in 25 of Roma’s 31 Serie A outings to this point in the campaign.
And, aside from a somewhat hit-and-miss patch of form earlier this year, Smalling has looked largely back to his best.
The 30-year-old’s positive impression at the Stadio Olimpico thus far, meanwhile, has long seen reports circulate that the Roma board have come to the decision to attempt to make Smalling’s transfer a permanent one.
The reliable Gianluca Di Marzio previously revealed that the defender had ‘convinced everyone’ at the club, and that the capital giants had begun ‘working towards redemption at the end of the season’.
To this point, though, one major stumbling block in Roma’s pursuit of a permanent deal for Smalling had remained Manchester United’s asking price.
Previous reports suggested that the Red Devils were demanding a fee of no less than £25 million for their out-of-favour stopper, the kind of figure which Roma simply could not afford to meet.
As outlined above, however, such demands appear to have since been dropped, allowing a deal to be struck.
The news comes courtesy of Alfredo Pedulla of Italian outlet SportItalia.
In an exclusive report, Pedulla claims that all that remains for Smalling’s permanent move to Rome to be made official are a couple of fine details.
This comes with Manchester United said to have accepted an offer which will see Roma extend the stopper’s loan through next season, at a cost of €3 million.
After this, the Giallorossi will fork over a further €17 million, as part of a purchase obligation.
— Alfredo Pedullà (@AlfredoPedulla) July 10, 2020
This article was edited by Josh Barker.
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