United seal summer Smalling swoop

BY foxsports • January 26, 2010

The deal completes an astounding rise to prominence for a player who was in the non-league ranks with Maidstone two years ago. Smalling has caught the eye with some excellent performances in the Cottagers' Europa League campaign this season and despite making only nine first-team appearances, Sir Alex Ferguson views the 20-year-old Londoner as having the talent to make a big impact on the game. United are refusing to state how long Smalling, who will complete the remainder of the season at Fulham, has signed his contract for. A club spokesman told United's official website: "Manchester United has agreed terms for the transfer of Chris Smalling from Fulham. "Chris has agreed personal terms with the club and will join for the beginning of the 2010/2011 campaign. He will remain at Fulham until the end of the current season." The move represents a moral victory for Ferguson, who lost out to Arsenal after having a fee agreed with Cardiff for Wales star Aaron Ramsey in 2008. This time it is Arsene Wenger losing out, after claiming earlier on Tuesday he was still interested in signing the Greenwich-born player. "It just looks like Manchester United offered more money than us," said Wenger. "As long as the player has not signed anywhere, it is not the end of it. Let's see what happens there."

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