The Reds will be aiming to maintain their advantage - currently three points - over rivals Manchester City with victory over Blackburn at Ewood Park on Monday night.
United are well-schooled in the trials and tribulations of tight title races, but Smalling admits this year's has an extra edge due to City's involvement.
"It definitely means more because it’s City," he added. "The media build it up and us as players definitely want to win it especially as we know quite a few of their players.
"It’s going to be crucial for whoever gets those bragging rights for the next year."
Chris was talking to ManUtd.com, PA Sport and Key 103.