Smalling: We can see the finish line

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Manchester United defender Chris Smalling and Chelsea striker Diego Coast
  • Post published:March 13, 2017

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling says his side are determined to redeem themselves against Chelsea when they meet in the FA Cup quarter-finals on Monday.

When the two sides last met in the Premier League, the Red Devils United were forced to watch as the Blues cruised to a 4-0 thrashing at Stamford Bridge on October 23.

However, Jose Mourinho’s side have not lost in the Premier League match since then, and are in much stronger form heading into their quarter-final encounter.

The 27-year-old defender has praised the Blues consistentcy in the Premier League this season, but he believes his side are in a much better form than the last time when the two sides met.

‘Chelsea have been by far the most consistent team in the league and they deserve to be in the position where they are now,’ Smalling told the Manchester United website.

‘But I think we are on a good run, and we will give a much better account of ourselves than we did last time.’

The 27-year-old centre-back felt he might have been set back by an injury on the October trip to West London, after coming off at half-time in the preceding 4-1 win over Fenerbahce in the Europa League.

The England defender believes the Red Devils have learnt a lot from their previous experience against Antonio Conte’s side, and he will be hoping history will be on their side when they lock horns at Stamford Bridge on Monday.

‘I think we all learned a lot of things from that game, and not only do we have progress in this competition to play for, we also have our pride as well,’ he added.

‘The FA Cup is a tough trophy to defend, and looking at previous records, not many people have been able to do it, and I know United haven’t. So to be a part of history by retaining the Cup would be brilliant.

‘We’re in the quarter-finals already and we can see the finishing line is not too far away if we play as well as we can.’

Manchester United will now go head-to-head with Chelsea in their FA Cup quarter-final clash at Stamford Bridge on Monday.

Kick-off has been set for 21:45.

Image: Manchester United website