Manchester United loanee Chris Smalling has admitted to missing life at Old Trafford, but insists that he's really enjoying his loan spell with Roma.

The 29-year-old joined I Giallorossi in a surprise season-long loan move towards the back end of August, after many had tipped Marcos Rojo to be the sacrificial lamb in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's reshaping of his United squad.

Chris Smalling

Smalling has flourished in Italy thus far, leading to speculation that Roma will look to make the move permanent sooner rather than later, amid rival interest from Inter and AC Milan.

Now, former Fulham defending Smalling, who was sensationally whisked away from non-league football at Maidstone by the Cottagers in 2008, has told talkSPORT that he does miss certain elements of being at United, but he's now enjoying his new experience in Rome.

“I do [miss ​Man Utd] because I was there for so many years and I was used to be being part of the furniture there,” Smalling said.

“But I am enjoying my new chapter, and hopefully I can keep affecting performances on the pitch and we can have a successful season.

“But right now I’m really enjoying being in Italy.”


Smalling went on to reveal that he's gradually picking up phrases and learning the Italian language, though his transition to live in the Italian capital has been aided by the ability of a number of players to speak English. 

He continued: “I’m starting to pick up things the manager is saying in Italian, and even with the players I’m lucky as quite a few of them speak English.

“I’m definitely picking up a lot of football phrases and a lot of basic phrases that are helping me interact with the team on and off the pitch.

“I am feeling very settled; my family is over here and the dogs are over here, so everyone is settled. When my family are happy and I am happy it shows on the pitch. Overall I can’t ask for much more in terms of my stay, which has been short so far, and at the minute my focus is on making sure this team has a settled season."

With Smalling's help, Roma lie sixth in ​Serie A after 12 games and have lost just twice in that time. They are, however, ten points adrift of leaders Juventus, after picking up four draws alongside six wins

United, meanwhile, are seventh in the ​Premier League after an indifferent start to the season, which has yielded just 16 points from their opening 12 games.