Roma are ready to increase their offer for Manchester United centre back Chris Smalling in an attempt to fend off interest from both Inter and AC Milan.
The 29-year-old has been hugely impressive on loan with Roma, but their attempts to sign him permanently have been fruitless so far. United are believed to have rejected an £8.5m bid for the defender.
It is thought that United are looking for something closer to the £17m mark but, according to Il Tempo (via Calciomercato), Roma are reluctant to meet those demands. Club officials will meet with United to try and negotiate a better deal, but they are ready to increase their initial offer slightly.
The Serie A side are determined to sign Smalling, who is said to be just as keen to make his switch to Rome permanent, but there is a fear that United’s demands could halt the deal.
There is now a new pressure on Roma to get this deal over the line, as both Inter and Milan are said to be interested in striking a deal after watching Smalling’s fantastic start to life in Italy.
The Englishman has made eight appearances in all competitions and has been thoroughly impressive. His aerial ability, tackling and passing have all earned rave reviews from fans and pundits alike, so there are expected to be plenty of options for Smalling once his loan comes to an end.
However, he only wants to remain in Roma, so it appears as though he will wait to see the result of their negotiations before figuring out his alternatives.
Speaking to Forbes, Smalling confessed that he felt at home in Italian football, insisting that he did not hesitate to take the opportunity to experience life overseas.
“I’m really enjoying Italian football and I think it does suit my game,” he said. “Hopefully come May I can say I’ve had a good season, the team’s had a good season and it’s been a great success.
“There aren’t too many English players that venture abroad. You are starting to see younger players going abroad on loan and having great success, but I think it’s a shame that more people aren’t venturing out.
“I think having the opportunity to experience Serie A at a big club like Roma was too good to turn down.”
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