Date: 8th July 2011 at 12:44pm
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Following a stellar debut season in the heart of Manchester United’s defence, young defender Chris Smalling has been rewarded with a new 5 year deal.

Smalling became a United player last January but officially joined the club at the start of last season.

It was thought that he would be one for the future but in his 34 appearances at the club he has shown more than enough to suggest that he is capable now with some mature and assured performances alongside both Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic.

Smalling also shone for England at the European u21 championship and was one of few players to come away from the competition with any credit having played in the heart of the defence with recent United signee Phil Jones.

Although Vidic and Ferdinand will taking some shifting Smalling will, like last season, get his opportunity and perhaps even more so with the departures of Brown and O’Shea and nobody doubts that he will take these chances with both hands.

Tying Smalling down to a long term contract has pleased Sir Alex as he told the club’s official website:

“I am delighted Chris has signed a new contract.

“Chris has been outstanding since joining us from Fulham last year, he is an extremely talented young defender, he’s quick, strong and reads the game well, he is a great asset to the team.”

Chris too is happy to have signed on and hopes to have a fruitful career at Old Trafford saying,

“This is a great club and, in the short time I have been here, I have already achieved more than I could have ever expected to.

“I am looking forward to a long and successful career at Manchester United.”