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Smalling: Man Utd belief couldn't be any higher heading into Arsenal clash

12:59 am AEDT 11/3/19
Chris Smalling Manchester United 2018-19
The Red Devils have been flying under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and will head to Emirates Stadium confident that another positive result can be claimed

Chris Smalling says “belief could not be any higher” at Manchester United, with the impact made by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer having convinced the Red Devils that they can beat anybody.

Back in December, a severe dip in confidence saw a side then led by Jose Mourinho slip to a 3-1 defeat at Liverpool with little resistance offered.

A change in the dugout was made on the back of that humbling reversal, with Solskjaer returned to Old Trafford in an interim managerial post.

He has gone on to oversee 14 wins in 17 outings across all competitions, with progress made in the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League.

Nine successive victories have been secured away from home, with Smalling seeing no reason why that run cannot be extended at Arsenal on Sunday.

He told MUTV: “Yeah, I think we are [confident].

“We have got that belief. Especially in the last five or six weeks from the teams we have come up against, whether it is Chelsea, Tottenham or PSG, all sorts, we know that we can go to teams and we can hurt teams. That belief could not be any higher at the moment.”

Asked to describe the mood inside the United camp under Solskjaer, Smalling added: “There is just a smile on everyone's faces. I think you can see with Ole that he is always smiling - be it at the training ground, at games or in post-match interviews.

“You can see that joy and happiness that he has. We feed off that. There are players who are injured, others who have stepped up, and everyone has got that belief, whoever steps in, that we can keep that high level that we have managed under Ole.”

Smalling has played a leading role in the reversal in fortune enjoyed under Solskjaer.

He was sidelined with an untimely injury at the start of the Norwegian’s reign, but was drafted straight back into the side when fit and has since committed to a new long-term contract.

The 29-year-old England international said of his experiences under a new coaching regime: “It was very unfortunate [at the start].

“Before Ole had come in I was used to playing every week and then I obviously had a broken toe, so I had to have a couple of months out, so I was chomping at the bit to get my boots back on and play under Ole.

“Luckily, that came as soon as I was fit against Fulham. I must say, it was nice to see the team doing well but I was just eager to get back in there and get involved. I was very fortunate that when I was back fit, Ole called upon me.”