St James' Park, Newcastle

Next Game

Newcastle v Man Utd

Wednesday, 04 March 2015, 19:45

Barclays Prem

Old Trafford

Last Game

Man Utd 2 - 0 S'land

Saturday, 28 February 2015, 15:00

Barclays Prem

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

I

d like to add players who push their team-mates out of the way to celebrate on their own

exhausted
The Ten Most Hated Things In Football

I

f I were Manuel Pellegrini I would keep quiet and hope the Board didn't notice City not winning anything. If he isn't sacked I'd be astonished.

lfcfan80
Pellegrini: I won't be sacked

S

till I suppose it still gives him at least another year in the job. By the time it comes around , he can always make up another excuse. First it was 3 months , then a year .....Next year ? Whats his excuse with Van Persie ?

spud1
Di Maria 'could peak next year'

Footer 365

Boro claim top spot as Derby lose

Middlesbrough became the new Championship leaders as they took advantage of Derby's latest slip by beating Millwall 3-0.

Aston Villa 2-1 West Brom: Benteke's late show helps end Villa's long wait for a win

Tim Sherwood recorded his first win as Aston Villa boss as Christian Benteke's late penalty helped beat West Brom 2-1.

Southampton 1-0 Crystal Palace: Sadio Mane's late strike keeps Saints in the hunt for fourth

Sadio Mane struck late at St Mary's to give Southampton a crucial 1-0 victory against Crystal Palace.

Mail Box

There Are Mitigating Circumstances For LVG

One Mailboxer is admant there are mitigating circumstances to LVG's struggles at Manchester Utd and he offers his four signings for next season...

LVG Stick Needs A Little Context...

LVG's rough ride from the media needs some context - then you would understand, while the Mailbox urges Nabil Bentaleb to go down...

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