Manchester United centre back Chris Smalling has warned his Red Devils teammates that he will not easily give up his place in the team this season, even though the club continue to be linked with central defenders.
Last season saw the 28-year-old rack up 29 Premier League appearances, usually being picked to start by Jose Mourinho whenever he was fit and ready to play.
It seems as though Smalling is after more of the same this season. Though United have not yet signed anyone dedicated to the heart of the defence, there is still a huge amount of competition within that area of the squad, but Smalling is ready for any challenge.
"To be fair I think I'm used to that every year," he said, according to ESPN. "This club is always linked to centre backs, whether it's the club or agents or whoever, because the best come here.
"But no, I'm happy and when I'm fit I play, so I just want to carry on from last season and right now the shirt's mine and I intend to keep it."
Smalling played all 120 minutes when his side faced Milan on Wednesday night in the International Champions Cup. The two sides drew 1-1 after extra time and went on to compete in an incredible penalty shootout, which the Premier League side eventually won in a 9-8 thriller.
Smalling and Co now prepare to face Liverpool in the same pre-season tournament on Saturday. The game will take place at the Michigan Stadium in their third to last pre-season friendly before the new season kicks off.