Tottenham and Everton ‘battling it out’ to sign Chris Smalling from Manchester United as defender impresses in Roma loan spell
Feb. 18, 2020
Tottenham and Everton are reportedly battling it out to sign Chris Smalling in the summer.
The Manchester United defender is currently on loan at Serie A side Roma and has impressed with a string of commanding displays at the back in the Italian capital.
Roma are keen to sign the 30-year-old on a permanent basis but they will have to fend off competition from the Premier League duo, who are also monitoring his situation ahead of the summer.
According to Italian newspaper Corriere Dello Sport, Jose Mourinho is an admirer of the central defender, while Everton and Serie A pace setters Juventus have also expressed an interest in striking a deal.
It is believed United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does not see Smalling in his long-term plans and he would be willing to cash in on the player if the right bid is made.
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward values the former England international at around £16.5million, with his current deal at the club expiring in 2022.
Tottenham are currently bracing themselves for life without Jan Vertonghen, who is stalling on signing a new deal at the club.
And Mourinho, who worked with Smalling at Man United from 2016-2018, believes he will add some much needed experience and quality to his back line.
Smalling has made 206 Premier League appearances for the Red Devils since he joined from Fulham in 2010.
He moved to Italy without being able to speak the language, but appeared to settle quickly and told talkSPORT in November he became comfortable in the country after a couple of months.
“I am feeling very settled; my family is over here and the dogs are over here, so everyone is settled. When my family are happy and I am happy it shows on the pitch.”
However, Roma are currently fifth in Serie A and it’s likely the defender will still assess his options.