Manchester United’s Chris Smalling hints at Roma stay

On-loan Manchester United defender Chris Smalling has today discussed the possibility of extending his stint with AS Roma.

Roma switch

English international Smalling had spent the last 9 years of his career on the books of Premier League giants United.

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.

Smalling 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 19 of Roma’s 24 Serie A outings to this point in the campaign.

And, aside from a slight dip in form of late, Smalling has looked largely back to his absolute best.

Chris Smalling during the Europe League football match AS Roma vs Borussia Monchengladbach at the Olympic Stadium in Rome, on october 24, 2019. (Photo by Silvia Lore/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

The 30-year-old’s positive impression at the Stadio Olimpico thus far, meanwhile, has seen reports mount that the Roma board have already come to the decision to attempt to make his transfer a permanent one.

The reliable Gianluca Di Marzio previously revealed that Smalling has ‘convinced everyone’ at the club, and that the capital giants have begun ‘working towards redemption at the end of the season’.

‘Discussions can take place’

And, if the latest comments on the part of Smalling himself are anything to go by, then the stopper certainly appears to be open to the idea of extending his Giallorossi stay beyond the summer.

Speaking in an interview with BBC Sportthe Manchester United man was drawn on the possibility of his Roma stint becoming a permanent one, to which he responded:

‘Yeah, I think the plan at the start of the season was to contribute as much as I can and then hopefully if we’ve all had a good season and hit our ambitions then those discussions can take place.’

Smalling continued:

‘I’ve been more than happy with my first half of the season. It’s now just making sure that we kick on and finish the season strongly because we have a lot to play for.’

‘Coming over here and trying to hit ground running with football was the priority. But my family settling in and me learning the language and enjoying the culture, it’s something you need to make the most of.’

‘My family and I definitely are.’

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