Manchester United are reportedly standing firm on their €18 million asking price for Chris Smalling, who is excelling in his loan spell with AS Roma.
As per a report from Italian publication Gazzetta dello Sport, via TEAMtalk, Manchester United are unwilling to lower their asking price for English defender Chris Smalling, who is wanted on a permanent transfer by Serie A giants AS Roma next summer.
Smalling is one of the longest-serving players on Manchester United’s books currently, having joined the club from Fulham back in 2010. The 30-year-old has made 323 appearances for the Red Devils winning two Premier League titles, a League Cup, an FA Cup and the UEFA Europa League in the process.
However, following the arrival of Harry Maguire in the summer for a world-record transfer fee, Smalling was deemed surplus to requirements at Manchester United and farmed out on loan to AS Roma. And the 30-year-old has thrived in his new surroundings, making a solid impression in Italy.
So far, Smalling has featured on 22 occasions for the Giallorossi across all competitions, scoring two goals and setting up one more. The England centre-back has been so impressive during his stint so far that Roma are intent on converting his loan deal into a permanent one at the end of the season.
But, there are set to be some complications in the deal as Manchester United are demanding €18 million for Smalling’s services and have no intentions of lowering their fee, even though Roma might find difficult to meet their valuation.
Roma are in the fifth place in the Serie A at the moment and are dependent on qualifying for the Champions League to fund the move. The report claims that The Giallorossi stand to make an extra €50 million from Champions League revenue should they qualify and are planning to use that to make Smalling’s transfer permanent.
Smalling is contracted with Manchester United till the summer of 2022. Despite his performances this season, it is unlikely that the 30-year-old will be reintegrated into the first-team at Old Trafford. And with Roma intent on making his transfer permanent, it remains to be seen if the two teams are able to strike an agreement on the transfer fee.