Chris Smalling has revealed he is ‘gutted’ that he will be unable to complete the season with Roma after Manchester United failed to grant him a loan extension.
The Italian side are back in Europa League action on Thursday when they take on Sevilla in the last-16.
But their initial loan agreement with United for the defender means he will be unable to feature in their European campaign this month following its expiry at the end of the Serie A season last Sunday.
Chris Smalling will return to Manchester United despite a successful loan spell at Roma
Smalling showed his frustration at not being able to complete the campaign with the Italian club where he has enjoyed a productive year away from Old Trafford.
He said: ‘I’m gutted that I can’t finish what we started this season. To experience the love shown to me in such a short time was extra special and it will not be forgotten.
‘I want to thank and wish all the players and staff the best of luck against Sevilla. DAJE ROMA!’
Smalling is surplus to requirements at United, and is expected to move on this summer
United are also in the Europa League, and with a 5-0 first leg lead over LASK have one foot in the quarter-finals.
They will face the winner of Roma and Sevilla in the last-eight and will be wary that extending Smalling’s stay in the Italian capital means they could come up against the defender in the next round.
There are no rules from UEFA that prohibit players playing against their parent clubs in European competition.
Smalling has enjoyed a productive season on loan at Roma from Manchester United
Smalling has impressed at Roma where he has featured 37 times in all competitions, netting three goals.
The Italian side finished fifth in Serie A but have been unable to match United’s £18million valuation to make Smalling’s stay a permanent one.
The 30-year-old is now set to return to Old Trafford where he has two years remaining on his contract, but he is unlikely to feature in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s plans who will remain keen on moving him on this summer.
Looking ahead to next season, the Italian outfit could now attempt to snap up Jan Vertonghen following his release form Tottenham after eight years at White Hart Lane.
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