Chris Smalling has acknowledged that we’re fragile at the back with all our injuries, with Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic, Rafael, John O’Shea and Jonny Evans all currently injured. However, he hopes that he’s played well enough in Rio’s absence to ensure the fans have faith in him.

“We’re down to the bare bones in the defensive department but whoever has stepped in has done a great job,” said Smalling. “When you come here you want to be playing on the massive nights and in the weekend games. You want to be given that chance and hopefully I’ve shown the fans I can be a real player here. Nemanja is a focal point of our defence and, being the captain as well, he’s a massive loss. But we’ve got other experienced players who can come in, like Wes and the fact he can do a job is great.”

Let’s just hope he can maintain it next season, like Evans sadly has struggled to do.




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