United and Roma still 'far apart' in Chris Smalling negotiations

Alex Turk

Chris Smalling is due to return to Manchester United once his extended loan stint at AS Roma comes to an end following their Europa League campaign this month.

However, it's no secret that Roma are seriously interested in signing Smalling on a permanent basis for the 2020/21 season onwards.

Meanwhile, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is seemingly willing to let the 30-year-old depart this summer and negotiations are thought to be ongoing - yet not with great success.

According to Di Marzio, talks are continuing between the two clubs, but their valuations remain 'far apart'.

He claims Roma are unwilling to pay more than a €3million loan plus a €12million option to buy, whilst United are demanding a €15million option to buy.

The fact that Solskjaer is eyeing a new centre-back just 12 months after capturing Harry Maguire on a record deal should tell you all you need to know about Smalling's future.

He's been at Old Trafford for 10 years, whilst Phil Jones has spent nine years at the club but both seem destined to be out of the starting picture for good now.

Smalling isn't a bad option whatsoever, but it's a clear sign of progress in Solskjaer's rebuild that his time as an important squad member is over.

There's no denying he's done well in Italy though and hopefully, he can secure a long-term move sooner rather than later.

Be sure to check out Fanzine Friday on Stretford Paddock, where Jay Motty speaks with Red News founder Barney Chilton...

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