With the likes of van der Sar, Neville and Scholes all leaving it could be thought that this younger United team will will miss that extra bit that the old guard provides but Chris Smalling is determined to assure fans that the team is in good hands,
“When you arrive here you learn about the winning mentality and the expectations straight away, even from training.
“Phil Jones, Ashley Young and David de Gea (the new signings) have not won anything with us yet, but they’ve a good gauge as to what this club is about.
“We go out onto the training field and we’re training like we’re playing.
“Even the older players are out there performing every day which is really good to see, and us young players really learn from that.”
Smalling will get a chance to prove this on Monday as he along with Jonny Evans and Phil Jones make up a young United back line in the face of injuries to both Ferdinand and Vidic.
Yet whilst Smalling feels our captain will be missed, he isn’t daunted by the task and instead sees it as an opportunity:
“Losing Vida is disappointing. He’s been such an influence over the years, and especially last season,” said Smalling on Vidic, who is out for up to five weeks with a calf injury.
“A lot of our stability was down to him, so it’s important other players now step up to the mark, but he’s going to be a big loss for whatever period he will be out.
“However, with the amount of games we have there are going to be people who pick up injuries, or people who lose form, so there are going to be a lot of opportunities.
“It’s down to you to step in and make the manager decide not to take you out of the team.”