'Let’s set the tone for the season'
Chris Smalling is hoping Manchester United can end pre-season in a positive manner and then set a marker in the Premier League season opener with Leicester City.
The Reds play Bayern Munich on Sunday, live on MUTV (UK/IRE) in the final warm-up game ahead of the new campaign, which kicks off on Friday, against Claude Puel's Foxes at Old Trafford.
Despite missing the last two matches of Tour 2018 presented by Aon, Smalling is confident the Reds can start the season on a high.
“I think it [the start of the season] does come round very quickly,”he admitted to MUTV,
“But that’s Manchester United.
“We’re often the most talked about, and why not let us set the tone for the season and hopefully just get that win and set a marker?”
The defender is gearing up for his ninth season at Old Trafford, meaning he is one of the most experienced members of Jose Mourinho's squad.
“It does feel like I’ve been here quite a few years but it doesn’t feel that many,”he admitted, when reviewing his time with the club.
“It’s crazy, if you sit down and think about where it all started and certain games and how the process has gone, it’s pretty crazy.
“I’m just relishing living in this moment and, hopefully, I can look back and be very satisfied [in years to come].
“Hopefully, there’s lots more to come, but it’s nice to have a contribution and to be here for quite a while, helping the team and the managers that have come.
“I just try to do my best and try to be a part of the team. That’s something I’ve really felt at this club.”
Smalling is also raring to go this season after interacting with United fans in America, during Tour 2018, and also while on holiday in Asia.
“It was probably the longest summer break that I’ve ever had and [my wife] Sam and I thought we’d make the most of it. We travelled to Thailand and Vietnam and managed to stop off at about eight or nine different places. We loved it!
“It’s a bit hard when you’re 6ft 4ins to go incognito,” he joked.
“No, but we met quite a few [fans] and I think that, as word spread later on in the trip, there were more.
“The locals were very polite and it was nice to just see the enthusiasm and to mix with some fans as well.”