Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Ferdinand Barks out Smalling's Route to Dominance

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Ferdinand Barks out Smalling's Route to Dominance

Article excerpt

UNITED great Rio Ferdinand has urged Chris Smalling to improve his communication if he is to become the England defence's leader.

Smalling, 26, has established himself as a United and England first-teamer over the last year and started the Three Lions' two Euro 2016 group games against Russia and Wales.

The Greenwich-born centre-back is one of the most vocal players in United's side but Ferdinand, who played with Smalling for four years at Old Trafford, believes his former team-mate needs to boss his colleagues around even more.

"It's an important tournament for Chris Smalling," Ferdinand told BBC Sport.

"He's probably the first centrehalf on the team-sheet.

"It's the time now for him to go in there and take the opportunity he's been given and become the leader in that back four. …

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