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Smalling: My Dreams Have Come True

Chris Smalling, who was playing for non-league Maidstone United five years ago, has spoken about how his dreams have come true, despite once believing he wouldn’t make it.

Smalling, who grew up supporting Arsenal, chose Manchester United over his boyhood club in January 2010 and has gone from strength to strength since moving to Old Trafford.

“It’s true it wasn’t long ago that I was playing non-league football,” said Smalling. “Every kid has got that dream to play at this level when they start playing football – but it wasn’t a dream I really thought would come true. I managed to play my football and I managed to get the odd trial when I was finishing school and luckily it paid off – but I couldn’t have dreamed of being where I am now. I think it shows anyone who gets into the game that it is never too late. It also means there is a lot more from me to come because I’ve only been in the game for a few years and I’m just striving for more.”

Smalling says he has had benefited from learning from the likes of Rio and Vidic, and hopes that one day he can be passing on this knowledge to the next generation.

“I think it’s good for me to be able to learn from Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic,” he said. “These are invaluable years. Hopefully, one day when I become established then people can look up to me, but these are the years that I’m taking advantage of now.”

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About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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10 Comments

  1. Andromeda says:

    Keep learning lad.Certainly you will be a pivotal player next season along with Phil Jones.

  2. Random says:

    Smashing player! Calm head, technically assured, ‘no celebrity bullshit’; he values and deserves the ascent that ended him at Manchester United from non-league …

  3. FletchTHEMAN says:

    Spot on mentality and look what it has done for him. Widespread praise from the manager and fans, call up for England.

  4. Andromeda says:

    A Carrick and Fletch type of player, no egotistic signs on and off the pitch, superb ethics and composure.in short typical united player.

  5. Unitedfanatic says:

    Evans – Centre back and Left back
    Smalling – Centre back and Right back
    Jones – Centre back, Right back and Midfield
    Rafael – Right flank
    Buttner – Left flank

    What an exciting array of defensive talent!! In addition we have reserves raring to step up and Vidic/Ferdinand/Evra raring to pass on their legacy…

    GGMU!

  6. Marq says:

    You forgot Fabio

  7. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Fabio will edge out buttner for me, i think the brazilian is a super talent but he needed a long season in the premier league and now he’s improving all the time and hopefully come back to united with confidence and belief to push evra.

  8. samuel - united WE stand says:

    On smalling, he’s made big strides in his career already. Non league to the very top level, it is not easy at all but with talent and right attitude, he now has the platfoem to really kick on. Chris has the aerial presence, power and mobility to become a top all round centre back but I think smalling needs to improve his distribution of the ball, he will have to learn from rio in terms of composure and his concentration can slack off at times but i think these are little issues that can be brushed aside with more experience, he’s got a lot potential and hopefully he will fulfill it.

    United can add michael keane to the collection as wel, grafting in the championship will bring him on physically added with experience but a quality top defender in the making, surely will hopefully be part of the first team soon enough.

  9. AlphaRS says:

    Chris Smalling is already learning about The United Way.

  10. denton davey says:

    BigManSmalling has been “inconsistent” but that’s to be expected when playing irregularly at the biggest club in the EPL – mistakes are magnified. He’s got it all – size, speed, calmness, and he’s learning on the job what it takes to play on a team for which any mistake gets analyzed-to-death. That said, I can see this guy playing for UTD for another dozen years.

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