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Man Utd 12:00 Stoke

Smalling targets long cup run

United stopper enjoying cup experience

Last Updated: 27/10/10 1:47pm

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Smalling: Enjoying cup experience

Smalling: Enjoying cup experience

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Defender Chris Smalling hopes to help Manchester United go all the way in this season's Carling Cup.

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"For a lot of us new boys who don't play that often it's great to be part of a cup run. It's great experience and we don't want it to end."
Chris Smalling Quotes of the week

Smalling, who joined the Red Devils from Fulham in the summer, has made two of his six outings for the club in the competition, most recently against Wolves on Tuesday night.

United triumphed 3-2 in that clash, ensuring them a spot in Saturday's quarter-final draw.

Experience

The result also takes Sir Alex Ferguson's men within three games of a third consecutive Wembley final, and Smalling is relishing the experience.

"After the last round, when so many big teams went out, we knew we had a good chance (to go all the way)," Smalling told the club's official website.

"For a lot of us new boys who don't play that often it's great to be part of a cup run. It's great experience and we don't want it to end."

Smalling says he expected a tough Wolves encounter, and was pleased to see United snatch a win.

"As soon as we saw the Wolves team-sheet was full of a lot of regulars we knew it would be a good test and I enjoyed it," he said.

"In the first half we had to keep our concentration levels high. You know that one lapse of concentration is all it takes and it's a completely different game. We stuck it out and we didn't concede any goals.

"The emphasis in the second half was to create a bit more and try and play cutting-edge balls in the final third and I think we did that."

Winner

The match was heading for extra-time until in-form forward Javier Hernandez came off the bench on 81 minutes to grab a late winner.

And Smalling was not surprised to see the Mexican seal the victory, adding: "It had to be him. He's on fire at the moment.

"When he came on we knew that (we just had to) get him a chance. Gibbo (Darron Gibson) played a great ball and then Chicha ran on through and finished. With that shimmy he did I think he faked all of us.

"It's great to go through to the next round because now we're only a couple of games away from Wembley."

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