Arsenal given green light to sign 6 ft 4 in Serie A defensive rock

Premier League clubs Arsenal, Tottenham and Everton have all expressed interest in signing Man United defender Chris Smalling, according to reports. The 30-year-old centre-back was sent on loan to Roma at the start of the 2019-20 campaign and has thrived in Italy, fantastic in Serie A and the Europa League.

Giallorossi are keen to sign Chris on a permanent deal, with Red Devils demanding a fee of nearly £25m, but they may struggle to secure his signature if they miss out on UCL qualification. Smalling has enjoyed his spell in Italy but may be tempted to return to England, with several clubs weighing up moves ahead of the summer transfer window.

Gunners, Spurs and Toffees are all interested in signing England international, who has played nearly 300 games for Man United. Arsenal signed Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares on loan deals in winter but may look to bring the English centre-back to Emirates if either fails to impress between now and the end of the campaign.

Spurs and Toffees, meanwhile, are expected to strengthen Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti’s respective squads this summer and have an eye on the centre-back. During his spell at Theatre of Dreams, Chris helped Red Devils win two Premier League titles, the FA Cup and Europa League.

Last month, Man United legend Rio Ferdinand described Chris as the ‘best defender’ at Old Trafford. ‘Chris Smalling is the best defender at the club,’ Ferdinand said. ‘If we’re talking just outright defending, he’s the best defender at the club.