Ole gives update on Chris Smalling’s future

Manchester United are set to face Brighton & Hove Albion at the AMEX Stadium on Saturday lunchtime.

Both sides were victorious in the EFL Cup midweek but whereas the Seagulls were 3-0 winners at Newcastle United in the Premier League last weekend, we were beaten 1-3 at home by Crystal Palace.

The good news is that we did the double over the south coast side last season and hopefully we’ll be able to kickstart our season with three points this weekend.

Prior to the game, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been speaking to the media at his pre-match press conference.

One of the topics that came up was the future of Chris Smalling. The former England international spent last season on loan at AS Roma, appearing in 30 of their 38 Serie A games.

The 30-year-old has been expected to make his move to the Italian capital permanent this summer, but Roma boss Paulo Fonseca seems uninterested now.

When Ole was asked if Chris Smalling could be part of the Manchester United first team this season, he told MUTV:

“Different things need to happen then, so let’s wait and see if there is that change. Let’s see what happens if, and when, the transfer window closes and what happens to Chris.”

Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof are the boss’ preferred centre-back pairing although they haven’t been too solid nor consistent over the past year.

Eric Bailly is another option to Solskjaer, but the Ivorian is often on the injury table. The only other experienced option we have is Phil Jones, so Smalling could be involved in matchday squads this season should we not move him on during this transfer window, which shuts on 5 October.