Old Trafford

Next Game

Man Utd v Leicester

Saturday, 31 January 2015, 15:00

Barclays Prem

Last Game

Cambridge Utd 0 - 0 Man Utd

Friday, 23 January 2015, 19:55

The FA Cup Fourth Round

Smalling: United squad learning

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling says the squad is learning and developing every day under new manager Louis van Gaal and his coaching staff.

Last Updated: 29/07/14 at 20:57 Post Comment

Chris Smalling: Manchester United defender looking forward to new season

Chris Smalling: Manchester United defender looking forward to new season

Smalling played in Van Gaal's new 3-4-1-2 system as the right-sided centre-back against LA Galaxy and the England international says he prefers that formation to the traditional 4-4-2.

The 24-year-old told Sky Sports News that he hopes United can employ the system as successfully as Van Gaal's Netherlands side did in finishing third in the World Cup.

He said: "We are very much looking forward to playing this formation. We obviously saw Holland's success in the summer and that gives us a lot of confidence that we can pick it up and do a good job.

"We've been learning each day and each day we have made gradual improvements and got better and better.

"I think if anything I like this more than the traditional 4-4-2 as it gives us a lot of freedom to go all the way in and be aggressive. As a defender I'd like to think that's my game."

Smalling, who is expected to play the whole 90 minutes as part of United's back three against Inter Milan at the FedEx Field, Washington DC on Tuesday, says communication is the key to making the new formation work.

"A lot of it is communication among the back three and the wing-backs as well. I think communication is the key and we all get on really well so I don't think that's going to be an issue," he said.

"The attacks start from the back and so there is a lot of emphasis for us to start those attacks and give the midfielders the ball in positions where they can go and hurt the opposition. There is a lot of building up from the back. Us defenders, we like to get involved.

"I think as defenders we all want to play and keep learning every day we will get better and better. Being comfortable, being able to take it into midfield and pass it quick; as that's our game, to give it to our attackers in those danger positions."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

O

ne of the conclusions from this list is that Man City should never buy a striker in January - good luck Wilfried Bony....

Savinator
F365's Top Ten Worst January Panic Buys

I

was there, it was embarrassing - the team looked totally unbalanced from the off, the defence was woeful and when Mikel came off injured it got even worse with nobody in front of them. Up front on several occasions we had opportunities and nobody would shoot - it was a complete farse! On the back of Salah's performance I'm glad there is talk of getting shot...

Fly1ngh1gh
Cup defeat shames Mourinho

G

reat to see Tommy Rosicky getting some love. A wonderful player. Such a pity we lost so long to injury. I was so excited when we signed him, this resurgence only makes the absences seem more of a lost opportunity.

cheshire-gooner
16 Conclusions: FA Cup Fourth Round Weekend

Footer 365

Transfer news: Samuel Eto'o leaves Everton for Sampdoria on free transfer

Samuel Eto'o has completed his free transfer from Everton to Sampdoria on a two-and-a-half-year deal.

Transfer news: Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino coy on transfers

Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino refuses to discuss transfer activity ahead of semi-final against Sheffield United.

Andrea Pirlo: Pogba not going back to Manchester United

Andrea Pirlo says that Manchester United must 'live with their mistake' of allowing Paul Pogba to leave because he is never coming back.

Mail Box

The Problem With FA Cup Shocks...

...is that the draw for the next round is pretty shocking. Blackburn v Stoke, anybody? We also have mails on LVG and ManUnited, who drew plenty under Fergie...

You're Man Utd, For Crying Out Loud!

Defending a 0-0 draw with Cambridge on the grounds that other teams lost to lower-league opposition is not befitting of Man United. We're inclined to agree with Mailboxers...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company