After netting a towering header during Monday’s 5-2 win over Kitchee FC, Chris Smalling revealed an ambition to improve his scoring record during the 2013/14 season.
The 23-year-old rose admirably to convert Tom Cleverley’s cross after 22 minutes of play at the Hong Kong Stadium, helping set up a comfortable victory for David Moyes’ men – despite playing on an extremely questionable playing surface in stifling conditions.
“It was difficult, all of the games have been difficult in this heat but it will hopefully stand us in good stead during the season,” Chris told MUTV. “It was nice to pop up with a goal too. But to be fair, I probably should have got a hat-trick. Hopefully, I will get more chances like that.
“I was waiting for it (the goal), I have been due one because I didn’t get too many last season. Hopefully, I will be able to get a few more this season and chip in a little more.
On the whole, having missed all of last summer’s pre-season tour through injury, Smalling was delighted to feature on Monday and is confident of starting the new season in good shape.
When asked how beneficial the Tour 2013 presented by Aon has been, the versatile defender was optimistic in his response: “Last season was a very frustrating one so it is nice to be involved with pre-season because I didn’t get that last time and I am feeling good. The more games, the better.”