My Man Utd character shows I can do a job for England - Smalling

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The centre-back outplayed Harry Kane in Saturday's FA Cup semi-final, and he insisted afterwards that he's proven himself time and again

Chris Smalling believes his continued successes with Manchester United are proof enough that he should be a huge consideration to go to this summer’s World Cup with England.

The centre-back played a key part in United’s 2-1 FA Cup semi-final victory over Tottenham at Wembley on Saturday, but looks an outside shot of being called up by England boss Gareth Southgate for the World Cup finals in Russia having not featured for his country since June 2017.

However, the 28-year-old still hopes he may get a late call thanks to the role he continues to play for United eight years on from his 2010 move from Fulham.

“All I can do is play the games and at the minute I’m playing every game and performing in big games so I’ll just keep doing my job,” he told reporters.

“Of course you want to be playing in the summer. All you can do is let your football do the talking. I think I’ve been a mainstay in the set-up for quite a while now and I just want to finish the season as strongly as I can and see what happens.

“I think it takes big characters to last so long at United. They’re always being linked to every player who has played the game, but the manager has faith in you and all the managers have faith in me and now I just want to finish the season as strongly as I can and enjoy it. 

“At the minute there’s no conversations [with Southgate] and I'm going to keep playing my games.”

Smalling helped to keep Spurs’ 37-goal front man Harry Kane quiet with his commanding performance on Saturday, and he explained how he gets satisfaction from going up against high-level strikers.

“Yeah, I love my battles against H. I don’t think he’s scored too many against me so long may that continue. It’s nice testing yourself against the best because certainly this year he’s been one of the best.”

For United, the trip to the FA Cup final on May 19 will give them an opportunity to end the season with a trophy having missed out on Premier League and Champions League glory this term.

And Smalling says that a cup triumph and second-place finish should be deemed acceptable and will give the club confidence ahead of next season.

“Yeah, I think considering how we were looking at it a few months ago, it was looking like that’s as much as we could have hoped for. At the moment we're achieving those things.

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“Obviously City won the league, and we had to make sure to give ourselves the best possible chance of winning a trophy and we feel we have done that.

“I think it’s just about consistency. I think we have shown more consistency this year. Obviously City have shown ultimate consistency but I think we’re building there and I think it’s been a case, especially in the last few months, of playing some very big games.

“We knew these months were big games for us and I think we have won near enough all the big ones so I think we're going to build up a lot of confidence going into next year.”

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