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Greatest quotes on Chris Smalling

Now firmly entrenched in the centre of defence for the Italian AS Roma team, Smalling was a feature of the Manchester United side in the 2010s, as well as the England national football team. A prolific winner of honours whilst at Old Trafford, we take a look at a selection of the greatest quotes on Chris Smalling.

Now in his third season in the Italian capital, Smalling spent ten fruitful seasons at United, helping the team win eight trophies.

From the lowly beginnings of competing for the non-league team Maidstone United, he helped Fulham reach the final of the Europa League in 2010 despite playing just a handful of games for them, before joining Manchester United in the summer of 2010.

With over 300 appearances for the ‘Red Devils’ Smalling managed to pick up the Premier League twice, the Europa League once, and the FA Cup once whilst he was there.

Having represented England in 31 internationals, including selection for the World Cup in 2014 and Euro 2016, Smalling was transferred to Italian side Roma in 2019 on a loan deal. However, after impressing, he made a more permanent move to the club a year later.

Turning vegan on the behest of his wife, Smalling is also well known for being the patron of education charity Football Beyond Borders, which helps young people from a school-age who are from a disadvantaged background.

Chris Smalling

“…..fantastic, absolutely brilliant…..absolutely marvellous and I couldn’t be more pleased.”
Alex Ferguson (Manchester United manager)

“Chris is a great, great man, a great, great professional. The adaptation (to Italian football) was very easy for him. He’s a boy that everyone loves in the club because he is a great professional…..I would like so much for Chris to stay here with us because he is very important.”
Paulo Fonseca (Roma manager)

“Chris came to us as a 16-year-old…..We had a trial match and within five minutes I was walking around the pitch to get him to sign forms. Chris has worked exceptionally hard but he was a talent, he had speed and awareness.”
Peter Nott (Maidstone reserve team coach)

“He’s played well for Manchester United…..Chris is a man I respect a great deal…..”
Gareth Southgate (England manager)

“He is an extremely talented young defender. He is quick, strong and reads the game well. He is a great asset to the team.”
Alex Ferguson (Manchester United manager)

“He’s getting better and better, playing the best football of his career in Italy; a country which knows a thing or two about defending…..This isn’t a one-off freak performance since Smalling has been consistently brilliant right from the start.”
Andy Mitten (football writer)

“I think he’s done well in Italy. He’s playing at another big club. He was obviously playing at a big club before.”
Gareth Southgate

“…..a proper defender…..If you are looking for consistency in judging the best player in the Premier League in his position, Chris ticks all the boxes.”
Gary Pallister (former Manchester United defender)

“Chris Smalling is a good defender…..”
Nemanja Vidic (former Manchester United defender)

“He’s playing like a great defender and a leader with personality…..He’s in full growth, since he arrived at Roma he has never played a bad game, never…..”
Angelo Mangiante (Italian journalist)

“…..his experience, his qualities are there, he is a fantastic player…..he is recognised here in Italy even in a funny way: ‘Smalldini’, which is [a mix] of Smalling and Maldini. He is doing amazing for us.”
Jose Mourinho (Roma manager)

“I have always said that he is important for us, it is important to have a player with his leadership in a squad with many young players.”
Paulo Fonseca

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