Emotional Smalling ‘gutted’ with Man Utd loan return

Date published: Tuesday 4th August 2020 12:00

Chris Smalling Roma TEAMtalk

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling says he is “gutted that he cannot finish was he started” at Roma.

The centre-back is heading back to Manchester this week after he was left out of the Roma squad for the Europa League knockout phase.

The 30-year-old, who played five times in Europe for Roma, will not feature for the remainder of the Serie A club’s Europa League campaign.

The original loan deal which took Smalling to Roma for the season was extended to cover the end of the Serie A campaign.

The player was hoping that the deal would take in the conclusion of the Europa League this month, but an agreement has not be found.

The deadline to submit squads for next month’s Europa League was August 3.

And Smalling tweeted his frustration.

 

Roma paid an initial £2.7m loan fee to sign Smalling for this season and he has been a regular for the Giallorossi, starting 29 Serie A fixtures.

United wanted £23m

Smalling.Lukaku.TEAMtalk

Smalling has been a big hit playing in Serie A this season and Roma wanted to keep the former England centre-back.

“The numbers don’t lie, they have been two successful loans,” Roma sporting director Gianluca Pertrachi told Sky Sports in Italy last month.

“We, unfortunately, lost Mkhitaryan for a physical problem for a little bit, but he’s very comfortable here just like Smalling.”

Talks regarding another loan or permanent move had been ongoing for some time, according to a report in Gazzetta dello Sport, cited on Sport Witness.

They claimed that United were demanding €23m for Smalling, who is contracted with the Red Devils until summer 2022.

Roma though only offered €17m, with only €3m of that up-front in their proposal and the other €14million paid at a later date.

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