FOOTBALL NEWS

22/01/2011 18:06, Report by Ben Hibbs
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Smalling eyes Blackpool outing

Chris Smalling hopes to retain his place alongside Nemanja Vidic for Tuesday’s trip to Blackpool – as much for a front row seat for United’s array of attacking stars who took Birmingham City apart at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Smalling stepped in for Rio Ferdinand, out with a groin injury, and it was a relatively easy afternoon as a defender as United hit five past the shell-shocked Blues.

“There were lots of goals, but if we’d been more clinical there could have been a lot more,” he told MUTV. “Overall it was a really good performance. We defended well and we attacked really well and always looked dangerous on the break.

“I felt like I did well today. It’s the manager’s decision [whether I play on Tuesday], but I have train well and make sure I’m ready. It’s nice to play in front of 75,000 fans. I’m enjoying it. I’ve had a few games alongside Vida, it’s a real joy. We train together, we’re always talking to each other. As long as we keep that together I think there’s nothing that can get past us. That showed today.”

But it was the performances of Dimitar Berbatov, Wayne Rooney and Ryan Giggs in particular who ensured plenty of goals to entertain the crowd.

“Berba was brilliant,” added Chris. “The ball is played up to him and it just sticks to him. He turns and runs at defenders, that’s the thing, and it’s really causing a threat. He’s got the runners around him with Nani and Wazza running off him. It gives defenders a nightmare and makes it easier for us at the back.

“The link-up play with Wazza is brilliant and I think they’re enjoying playing together. Hopefully there’s more of that to come.”

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