EPL

Solskjaer hints returning Smalling could have Man Utd future

By Sports Desk August 04, 2020

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has hinted Chris Smalling could have a Manchester United future after he completed an impressive loan spell with Roma.

Defender Smalling on Tuesday stated he was "gutted" that he would play no further part in Roma's quest to win the Europa League.

The centre-back was rock solid at the heart of the Eternal City giants' defence during his season in Italy, but the loan agreement ended after Roma's final Serie A match of the campaign against Juventus on Saturday.

He tweeted following his Roma departure: "I'm gutted that I can't finish what we started this season.

"To experience the love shown to me in such a short time was extra special and it will not be forgotten. I want to thank and wish all the players and staff the best of luck against Sevilla. DAJE ROMA!"

Solskjaer suggested the former Fulham man may play a part at Old Trafford next season.

"I think Chris has shown over his career how valuable he is at Manchester United," Solskjaer said ahead of United's Europa League last-16 second-leg tie against LASK on Wednesday.

"This season was about him being regular and going to Roma and showing how good a centre-back he is.

"I wanted to give Harry [Maguire], Vic [Lindelof] and maybe Axel [Tuanzebe] a chance.

"It was best for him to go and play for a year in Roma and he has shown he will be valuable. I've been speaking to Chris throughout and I've been delighted with his season."

Smalling played in 30 of Roma's Serie A matches as they finished fifth, while he also made five starts in the Europa League.

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