Friday, July 1, 2022

Chris Smalling move to Roma a surprising one

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According to Sky Sports, Manchester United centre-back, Chris Smalling is set to join Italian club Roma on-loan until next summer. The Giallorossi are reportedly set to pay a loan fee of around £2.7million to sign the defender. The report states that Smalling visited United’s training ground early today and is now expected to head to the Italian capital to undergo a medical.

This move has come from nowhere

This a move that has seemingly come from nowhere. The 29-year-old has been pushed down the centre-back pecking order with the arrival of Harry Maguire this summer. However, it appeared that United wanted to keep hold of Smalling this summer after they rebuffed a loan offer from north west rivals Everton near the end of the Premier League deadline.

Maybe the Red Devils just didn’t want to loan Smalling to a fellow Premier League club, or even a team that could threaten their position in the leagues top-six. Either way a move abroad for Smalling is even more surprising.

Smalling has had mixed fortunes at United

In truth, Chris Smalling has enjoyed mixed fortunes at United in his nine years with the club. At times he has appeared to be a rock at the back for United. At other times he has proven a liability for the Red Devils.

United fans have waited and waited for Smalling to return to full fitness and find consistent. The truth is that Smalling may never be a consistent performer and he may always have a mistake in him. He has just never really fulfilled his early promise as a youngster at Fulham.

At one point he looked set to cement his place in the heart of both the Red Devils defence and England’s defence. However, injuries have hampered his development and career. Maybe without the injuries, he would have done more during his Manchester United career. Smalling at this point is looking to revive his stop-start career in recent seasons.

If he stayed at Manchester United, he would be behind the aforementioned Maguire and Victor Lindelof in the pecking order. United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also has the likes of Eric Bailly, Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo available to him as centre-back options.

The latter may leave before the European transfer window shuts, but that still leaves five senior centre-backs competing for two starting spots.

A move Roma looks like a good one for Smalling on paper too. The style of the league may well suit him and he could well play more games with the Giallorossi, after the summer sale of Kostas Manolas to Napoli.

Roma outsiders for the Champions League spots

Smalling’s potential new club Roma have been there or thereabout in the European spots in Serie A for what seems like forever. However, this season the Giallorossi are odds of 2/ 1 to make the Champions League this season.

The arrival of Smalling is unlikely to improve Roma’s chances of making the Champions League spots that much. However, he may prove to be a decent, experience option for Paulo Fonseca’s team.

This seems like an unusual move around if it goes through. Hopefully, for everybody’s case the move proves to be a success, including his parent club Manchester United, who have seemingly deemed him surplus to requirements.

Will Chris Smalling be a success at Roma?


David Nugent

David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.



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