25 Sep 2014

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling suffers thigh injury

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling has suffered a thigh injury and may be a doubt for Saturday’s Premier League clash with West Ham.

United will assess his condition on Thursday, but manager Louis van Gaal is already without central defenders Phil Jones (hamstring), Jonny Evans (ankle) and Tyler Blackett (suspended) for Saturday’s match at Old Trafford.

Former United defender Gerald Pique has been linked with a shock move back to Manchester in the January transfer window.

The Spain star is unhappy at the Nou Camp after seeing new signing Jeremy Mathieu preferred for some matches this season, and van Gaal is desperate to add to sign a big-name defender to the Old Trafford ranks.

However, Barca boss Luis Enrique says the 27-year-old, who joined the Catalan giants from United in 2008, has shown great maturity in dealing with the setback of his losing his place.

“Pique’s attitude is great, he’s optimistic, working hard. His hip problem has been solved, he’s ready to help us,” he said.

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