English Premiership

Smalling hungry for FA Cup glory

2016-05-04 11:14
Chris Smalling (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Chris Smalling has expressed his delight at winning Manchester United's Players' Player of the Year award and confirmed that his focus is on winning the FA Cup.

United rewarded Smalling for his outstanding work in defence during a difficult season. The 26-year-old's partnership with Daley Blind has ensured that Louis van Gaal's side have the second-best defensive record in the Premier League, conceding only 31 goals - three more than second-placed Tottenham.

"It's a massive honour to receive this from my fellow players," he told reporters after the awards ceremony. "There are some big names on the winners' list, so it's great to add mine to it.

"It's been good that we [Daley Blind and Smalling] have been able to play so consistently together and learn each other's game. We've been quite solid as a team defensively."

Smalling also spoke of the new leadership role he has been entrusted with; he is currently third-choice captain, having been handed the armband on a number of occasions this term.

"[The captaincy] is a huge honour and it's great that the manager has shown faith in me," added the England international.

"It's nice that after Michael Carrick and Wayne Rooney I get the chance. It really adds to your own sense of leadership.

"It's nice to win this award tonight, but I'm looking forward to hopefully picking up another trophy at Wembley in a few weeks."

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