Published: Wed, November 22, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Chris Smalling feels defenders should be afraid of Manchester United's world-class attackers

Chris Smalling feels defenders should be afraid of Manchester United's world-class attackers

Smalling was overlooked for England's recent friendly games against Germany and Brazil, with Southgate picking younger players and saying he wanted his team to move toward a style of "using the ball from the back and building up in a certain way".

"Was I surprised [to be left out]?" he said.

Asked about Southgate's decision and comments on the eve of United's Champions League group tie against Basle in Switzerland, he said: 'Was I surprised?

"Whilst I'm playing regularly under Jose, than I am happy enough".

"You don't play for one of the biggest clubs in the world for as long as I have and won most trophies bar the Champions League without being able to do everything that a top defender can do, be it playing or defending". Smalling, however, remains unconcerned at the moment and believes that if he continues to perform in the same manner, the England boss will have no choice but to select him when he names his squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation next summer.

"I hope (Smalling) doesn't get his spot (in the England team) because somebody comes (back) injured, he comes injured, Jones comes injured and real injuries", Mourinho told reporters.

"No matter what game it is, no matter what competition it is, we've got a front three or four who can cause the opposition problems".

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I play under one of the biggest, most successful managers in Jose [Mourinho], and he's only going to pick the best players.

The 28-year-old marked his seventh league appearance of the season with a goal in United's 4-1 win over Newcastle United last weekend as the second-placed side maintained their eight-point gap behind leaders Manchester City.

"As a team we have one of the best defensive record this year and I am very proud to be a part of that".

"While I'm here, as part of a successful team, that should show, come the summer, what is to be".

And Mourinho said England medical staff gave the centre-back six injections so he could play.

"You want to be able to play regular games and be a part of a successful team and so far we have been successful, it's just a case of improving on previous year when we won two trophies and improving on that". "We don't have Jones, we don't have Eric Bailly again, so Smalling has to play every match and well, that we can say".

"Smalling is playing all the time and. tomorrow plays again". Whether it's the Premier League or the Champions League, I think I can showcase my abilities.

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