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

B

enteke is an absolute steal for £32.5m, he would get into any team in the world (except Barcelona) at the moment. I've seen many very good strikers in my 30+ years as a Villa fan. This guy is the best without question.

sparkigol
Benteke's £32.5m release clause

A

ll he wants are sharks with frickin lazers on their heads. Is that too much to ask?

mufc phil
Bomb threat on FIFA D-day

W

hy is the dinosaur trying to hold on to this.... Just leave... No one wants you in this position you corrupt loser. Let someone else take over....

arsenal121
Defiant Sepp blames minority

Footer 365

Angry FIFA president Sepp Blatter hits out at 'hate campaign'

Newly-elected FIFA president Sepp Blatter has launched an attack on the US justice authorities and English media.

Sepp Blatter: I'm still the man to solve FIFA's problems

Sepp Blatter has insisted he is "still the man" to lead FIFA after winning a fifth presidential term.

Rio Ferdinand announces his retirement from football

Rio Ferdinand has announced his retirement from professional football.

Mail Box

Players Must Stand Up For Qatar Boycott

Players, not bureaucrats, hold the key to boycotting Qatar. Also in the afternoon mailbox: Wenger is right to rotate, Zlatan can dribble, and it's Barca v Ajax in the budget final...

What Would You Do If You Were Blatter?

Step into Sepp's shoes, is the invitation from one mailboxer. Also: United already have their new number one, Rodgers deserves time, and the best Budget XI so far...

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