FOOTBALL NEWS

26/01/2010 15:40, Report by Ben Hibbs

Reds swoop for Smalling

United have agreed terms with Fulham to sign their England Under-21 international defender Chris Smalling.

The 20-year-old Greenwich-born centre-back will join the Reds from the start of the 2010/11 season.

A club spokesperson told ManUtd.com: "Manchester United has agreed terms for the transfer of Chris Smalling from Fulham. Chris has agreed personal terms with the club and will join for the beginning of the 2010/2011 campaign. He will remain at Fulham until the end of the current season."

An England Under-21 international, Smalling has made just nine first-team appearances for Fulham, who signed him from non-league Maidstone 18 months ago.

After shining in the club’s Reserves, Roy Hodgson handed him his senior debut on the final day of the 2008/09 season. His first start came in September 2009 when Fulham travelled to CSKA Sofia in the UEFA Cup, where he played the full 90 minutes in a 1-1 draw. Hodgson said: “If you analysed his performance, he played with a maturity I'm not entitled to expect from a player so young.”

Smalling earned an England U21 debut in November last year and a first league start, against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, six weeks later.

Profile: Chris Smalling

Position: Defender
DOB: 22/11/89, Greenwich, London
Height: 192cm
Weight: 81kg
Previous Clubs
: Maidstone United
International: England U21

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