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Chris Smalling 2017-18 Performances

Jump to: Chelsea 1:0 Man Utd

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6.0 Average rating
45 Appearances
4 Goals
20 Clean sheets
4 Yellow cards
  1. Feb 2, 2018

    Andersons Dietician Full Member

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    That I agree with, and I should have mentioned Mata in this as well as he is one of the few players that will show for a pass from defence. The rest are too interested with getting forward and up the pitch and therefore hamper us getting the ball out from defence.
    Lingard is one of the worst for this in our team he will just sit behind a midfielder with absoulutly no way of the defence getting a ball to him. On the odd occasion he does show he plays it straight back then runs forward waiting for a punt.
    It’s not just a problem for Smalling it’s all our defenders the movement around them is shocking, absoulutly no one to pass to. There is no pattern to our play, in general I’m surprised we sit in 2nd because I’ve seen Sunday league teams with better structure and movement than we have.
  2. Feb 2, 2018

    abdo99 Full Member City Lover

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    Smalling needs to work on his passing if he wants to stay here.
  3. Feb 2, 2018

    Rossa Full Member

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    I'm just baffled, stunned, perplexed. How did you reach that conclusion? So he unsettled Jones so much that 7 seconds into the match, Jones lost a header he should win 10/10. Then he unsettled Jones so much that Jones scored an own goal, and played rubbish throughout the match. Yes, Smalling clearly unsettled him. In fact, it must be Smalling's fault that DDG showed far worse passing and clearing ability than Smalling did. It's probably Smalling who unsettled Martial as well.
  4. Feb 2, 2018

    haram Full Member

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    They probably know he is an ok player, just not that good.
  5. Feb 2, 2018

    manunited1919 Full Member

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    Smalling is perhaps the best player we have at actually defending. And that is his main job, and the reason he is in the team. It was Jones’ errors that put our team under pressure and cost us the game, yet all the moaning here is about Smalling.

    I can see that Smalling is not the best passer around, he needs to improve that area. But what we saw in that game was a failure of tactics as well as individuals. Spurs would let Smalling have the ball and cover all the passing lanes. It’s exactly what we did to Sanchez (the Ajax defender who now plays for Spurs) in the EL final. If you have Lindgard, Pogba, Martial, etc not helping to provide an outlet and bring the ball from the back to the attack, there are no outlets for Smalling to pass.
  6. Feb 2, 2018

    Robbie Boy Full Member

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    Two mental extremes in here: Camp 1: Smalling is absolutely brilliant: Camp 2: Smalling is shite. Truth, as-per, is somewhere in the middle. I do think some have a tendency to get overly defensive about him for some reason, though.
  7. Feb 2, 2018

    11101 Full Member

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    Or to put it another way, he's another Jonny Evans.
  8. Feb 2, 2018

    Adam-Utd Part of first caf team to complete Destiny raid

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    He's a great defender but i'm not sure he should play the "big" games. His ability on the ball really causes us issues and lets us get pressed far too easily.

    As a 1v1 defender though his pace really comes in handy.
  9. Feb 2, 2018

    haram Full Member

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    Then he should play against the weaker teams where we are higher up the pitch.
  10. Feb 2, 2018

    Adam-Utd Part of first caf team to complete Destiny raid

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    Yep, generally against teams that are sitting off he is OK because he isn't pressured. His height also comes into play as they usually play long balls to get out of their box.
  11. Feb 2, 2018

    haram Full Member

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    Which is why I think he can be replaced. Not now, as we have other gaps to fill in the squad, but maybe the summer after this next one. He is an ok player but it’s not like he cannot be upgraded on.
  12. Feb 2, 2018

    Loublaze ATLien

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    Lets revisit the 'big' games this season Smalling has played in (its actually all of them). Liverpool 0-0, Arsenal 1-3, Chelsea loss 1-0, Spurs win 1-0, Spurs loss 2-0. Hasn't been at fault for any goals conceded. Against Spurs he made 4 blocks, 7 clearances, 2 interceptions and won 83% of his aerial duels. Jones by comparison made 3 blocks, 6 clearances, 3 interceptions and won 0% of his aerial duels.
  13. Feb 2, 2018

    Amar__ Not so Full Member

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    Wow, that's amazing stat. Both Jones and Rojo are terrible in the air.
  14. Feb 2, 2018

    Revan Assumptionman

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    Bailly and Lindelof doesn't seem much better too, which can be a problem if we want a stable partnership which is good at everything.
  15. Feb 2, 2018

    RedPed Full Member

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    Feck's sake, what is it with your love affair with Chris Smalling?? I swear you either must be him or his dad?? It really is unnerving! You just will not have anybody say a bad word against him.....even though he really is shite! What are you going to do when he is playing for West Ham or Crystal Palace??
  16. Feb 3, 2018

    Ashley R1+O New Member

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    Largely I disagree with the assessment, I think it is very lazy and completely off the mark. The big part about being a defender at a big club is being able to defend. Which is why Smalling is being selected and getting starts over Lindelof, Rojo and a hand full of injured and fringe players. The easiest way to demystify the "must be good on the ball" argument is the Daley Blind experiment under Van Gaal. He got the swift toepunt out of the lineup because being a defender means you have to be able to defend, mark your man and operate in a defensive system. After Blind's total disaster of a season under Van Gaal the easiest retort is, well if being great on the ball is so fantastic? Why isn't Blind getting starts for days over such neanderthals with the ball as Jones/Smalling/Bailly?

    Look, I'll be blunt. Playing on the ball doesn't mean anything more than an added bonus to creating attacks and keeping the pressure off your back line. Which is fine, and does serve some purpose and I will admit that it ties into individual pressure and ability. As long as our CB's are adequate as defenders then they will start for Jose. There is little to no reason why bringing in the players ability on the ball into such an argument when he is defending at a capable level and probably the highest consistent level in our squad.

    If you want to question Smalling's leadership ability and composure? Then I will happily step aside and let people continue to do so, people just need to stop equating "coz hes shit on the ball, la" with his ability as a defender.
    The arguments are completely separate and I also personally question Smalling's leadership and composure on that separate argument, but I would like to see him play next to a proper right fullback who can keep a line, drag across smartly when there is danger on and be able to carry the attacking aspect with some proper cadence and tempo because Valencia in my opinion is a total train-weck and when I look at the back line the first thing that sticks out is "jesus it must be hard to play beside this guy"..

    Like I've said all along, there is a total jumble of combinations in our defensive line. Wingers as fullbacks, CB's who can't form a partnership and the one staple is mainly DdG. Jose needs to sort this issue out and it will take time as we've spent 50m on defenders and we can't bin them, we need them to organically push our current players who can be fit to start out of the team. Bailly needs fitness and Lindelof needs to settle in, patience in this situation is needed.
  17. Feb 3, 2018

    AP88 Full Member

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    Van Gaal knew Smalling needs calmness and composure next to him to settle him down - hence the successful partnership with Blind and his best run of form for United. Jones is chaos, not always in a bad way, but chaos none the less, and this panics Smalling.

    Carrick’s semi-retired, but I feel he could be useful next to Smalling as José doesn’t rate/trust Blind at centre back.
  18. Feb 3, 2018

    Shark @NotShark

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    What did I just read.
  19. Feb 3, 2018

    Loublaze ATLien

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    One reason Smalling has been valued by both LVG and Mourinho. Smalling has some of the best aerial duel numbers in the league.
    Are you mad? You don't have to respond to my comments in this thread son.
  20. Feb 3, 2018

    POF Full Member

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    Completely the opposite. In big games you need your best defenders because (as shown in the Spurs and City games this season) conceding a goal in these games can completely change the course of the game.

    Against weaker opposition you can play a weaker defender who is better on the ball as they will have less work to do defensively and having a better footballer back there will help break down a parked bus.
  21. Feb 3, 2018

    manunited1919 Full Member

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    Phil Jones doesn’t defend aerial duels...it’s Smalling’s fault.
    Pogba goes AWOL in midfield...it’s Smalling’s fault.
    Fellaini gets injured. Hey, let’s blame Smalling for not passing the ball as a United player should.
    The day De Gea makes a mistake. It will be Smalling’s fault.
    Bad day at work? I think you know who to blame.
  22. Feb 3, 2018

    J_Red 11 Banned

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    Honestly, too many people are scapegoating Smalling when we conceded or when we aren't getting good results. The goals from Spurs were clearly Jones's fault, if there is 2nd person who is to be blamed for the goals that will be Young. Spurs was exposing Jones & Young sides so badly. Hardly I see Spurs is attacking Smalling & Valencia side. We need to stop blaming the wrong players here.

    Both Smalling & Jones should never play together unless if we have Carrick's type of player in midfield instead of Matic. With Smalling, Jones & Matic together, we will struggle to build up play from the back. Need ball playing defender or deep playmaker.
  23. Feb 3, 2018

    vi1lain caf sexpert

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    Excellent post.
  24. Feb 3, 2018

    Rossa Full Member

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    Smalling plays, Jones benched. Are you people still 100% convinced that Jones is ahead of Smalling in the pecking order?

    Hopefully, Dmalling and Rojo are both solid tonight.
  25. Feb 3, 2018

    Amar__ Not so Full Member

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    Fourth choice :lol:
  26. Feb 3, 2018

    vi1lain caf sexpert

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    Jones is sick and not in the team at all, though I’m not convinced he would’ve started anyway since Pogba and Martial were dropped.

    But either way it’s pretty clear that Jose rates Smalling, even if the ‘fans’ don’t, he starts him every opportunity he can this season.
  27. Feb 3, 2018

    Classical Mechanic Full Member

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    I think Jones would have started tbh. Mou said in his post match interview that he didn’t blame him for the own goal. Think Pogba was dropped because of the arguments he was having with Jose during the game and he’s long had a problem with Martial’s application.
  28. Feb 3, 2018

    vi1lain caf sexpert

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    We’ll never know of course, Jones will come back in the squad as he’s a preferred option to Rojo and Lindelof - but the point remains that Jose rates Smalling highly.
  29. Feb 3, 2018

    Dir Wangem Banned

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    Feck yeah!

    To the Smalling haters: I fart in your general direction!
  30. Feb 3, 2018

    Classical Mechanic Full Member

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    I agree on that. He likes defenders first and foremost and Smalling is a very good defender. My worry is here is there is some issue with Pogba brewing,
  31. Feb 3, 2018

    vi1lain caf sexpert

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    I doubt it, I think Jose is showing Pogba that no individual is bigger than the team and bad performances won’t be rewarded regardless of your status in the team.
    Hopefully Pogba reacts professionally and doesn’t take it to heart.
    Everybody will benefit from competition in the squad.
  32. Feb 3, 2018

    Classical Mechanic Full Member

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    Hope so.
  33. Feb 3, 2018

    Udayan K. New Member

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    I think you missed his point. Rather a lot of people here defending Smalling are missing the point:

    Smalling is good at his primary job - one of the better ones in the team (although nowhere near the best in Europe). But that's the minimum requirement anyway. What you say is an added bonus is really a requirement if you want to play for Manchester United or a club that aims to compete for trophies at the highest level. And it is applicable to all players - you can't just be good at your primary job, that's a bare minimum - you need to be on a level higher than "good at his primary job".

    Smalling is terrible on the ball, lacks composure, and I am not sure he is the perfect leader on the pitch. There's a difference between a good defender and a great defender and you and I both know which kind a club like Manchester United should be playing. I think a similar argument can be used for a lot of players in our squad, which is slowly changing under Jose.

    Which brings us to the manager - Jose thinks Smalling is doing a good job for him? That's good, but I don't believe for a second Jose doesn't wish for a Smalling who is very good on the ball, has composure, and is a leader on and off the pitch.
  34. Feb 3, 2018

    Ekeke Full Member

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    Its funny because if Smalling's defending is the bare minimum then we dont have a single defender qualified other than him.
  35. Feb 3, 2018

    J_Red 11 Banned

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    It's not like Jones is very good on the ball, has composure and a leader on and off the pitch but Smalling got more hate and agenda than Jones. It's not like the others three are "very good", "composed" and "a leader" as well.
  36. Threadmark: Man Utd 2:0 Huddersfield
    Feb 3, 2018

    Udayan K. New Member

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    I think you are reaching - he wasn't even first choice early in the season. But okay, maybe what you say is true, doesn't mean what I said is wrong - we need better CBs, especially if we are to play a counter-attacking game under Jose.

    Smalling is one of the worst on the ball and is first choice these days. Jones is clearly more comfortable on the ball. But I agree he gets more vitriol around here.
  37. Feb 3, 2018

    Jacci New Member

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    Jones made some big mistakes last game but Smalling is the guy that should be left out of the squad. He always make the other CB take the responsibility of playmaking, hell, he even let de gea in that role. Was hoping for lindelof rojo today.
  38. Feb 3, 2018

    Loublaze ATLien

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    Smalling has been brilliant thus far in this game
  39. Feb 3, 2018

    Rossa Full Member

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    Smalling has been better than Rojo today, but always Smalling who needs to go.
  40. Feb 3, 2018

    acnumber9 Full Member

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    What playmaking is Rojo doing?