Premier League: Chris Smalling ready for Manchester United's tough start
Chris Smalling believes Manchester United's tough start to the Premier League season could be in their favour.
Last Updated: 17/08/13 4:46pm
The new season brings the same challenge for Smalling, who is likely battling with Phil Jones for the right-back slot with Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand and Jonny Evans likely to battle for central roles.
"It does make it tough," he added. "When I first joined, there were a lot of centre-backs and it was the same last season.
"It makes it really competitive because everyone is looking for one of those two spots. It keeps us on our toes that's for sure.
"I just want to stay injury free. Being out was so frustrating. I don't think I played after Easter because of my foot.
"It makes such a difference when you get a proper pre-season under your belt. Without it, you are catching up a little bit. I feel good at the moment. I'm not far off (being 100% match fit) now. I feel confident and it is just about getting that sharpness back."
You can watch Swansea City take on Manchester United on Sky Sports 1HD and Sky Sports 3D from 17:00 on Saturday.