Chris Smalling has signed a new contract with Manchester United, extending his eight-year association with the Old Trafford side.
The deal ties the 29-year-old to the club until 2022, with an option for a further year on the end of that – a strong statement from United's hierarchy that they see Smalling as a player who can play the role of veteran leader at Old Trafford.
Quoted on the club's website, Smalling said: “This is my ninth season with the club and I am delighted to be continuing my progression with this team. It is a real honour to play for Manchester United and we are all now concentrating on the busy schedule of games throughout the festive period.”
Jose Mourinho added: “I am very happy Chris has signed a new contract. Chris has been with the club for a number of years and is now one of the senior players within our squad.”
Smalling has made over 300 first team appearances for the Red Devils over the years, including 18 starts this season alone. Only Nemanja Matic and goalkeeper David de Gea have played more league minutes than the London-born defender, with a rotating cast alongside him a reflection of both injury issues and Mourinho's continued unhappiness with his options at the back.