Manchester United defender Chris Smalling is likely to start against Tottenham Hotspur in the centre-back position against Tottenham Hotspur.
Louis van Gaal already confirmed Luke Shaw, summer signing Matteo Darmian will be two full-backs, while Daley Blind will be the left centre-back when the Red Devils take on the north London club.
The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager said after United’s 2-0 pre-season friendly defeat against Paris Saint-Germain that Phil Jones is unlikely to start for the Premier League season-opener.
“I think I shall play Luke Shaw and Matteo Darmian, with Daley Blind on the left side of defence. The right central defensive position I have to consider,” Van Gaal said.
Now according to the Guardian, Smalling will get the nod ahead of the former Blackburn Rovers defender this Saturday. The report says the Dutchman staged a private match and both teams included United players.
Smalling was a part of the game and after that, Van Gaal has decided to include him in the playing XI when they face Tottenham this weekend. The England international should start ahead of Jones, unless and until there are any injury concerns during the training.
Van Gaal has been stressing on the importance of starting the new season with a victory. In his debut match at Old Trafford, United suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Swansea City in the 2014-15 season.
The central defending position is where United need to strengthen and the teams have not bolster their heart of the defence in the summer transfer window.