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Jose confirms Chris Smalling won’t be joining Leicester

Manchester United centre-back Chris Smalling has been a target of Leicester City over the past week, according to reports.

The England international is yet to feature in the Premier League this season following the growing partnership of Eric Bailly and Phil Jones, who have kept a clean sheet in all three games.

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Smalling also has to compete with new £39.5 million signing Victor Lindelof, who is yet to make his Premier League debut.

So perhaps it hasn’t been a surprise to see his name linked with a move away from Old Trafford.  Earlier this week the Sun reported that Leicester boss Craig Shakespeare was interested in bringing the 27-year-old to the King Power Stadium.

Leicester have already spent £17 million on Harry Maguire earlier this summer and his first three appearances for the Foxes have been enough to impress England manager Gareth Southgate, who has subsequently called the centre-back up to the national team squad for the first time earlier this week.

Maguire is currently partnered with Wes Morgan in the Leicester defence, with Robert Huth currently sidelined.  Although Morgan captained the East Midlands club to a shock Premier League title in 2015-16 it is easy to understand why the manager would see Smalling as an upgrade.

However, it appears Leicester City are out of luck as United boss Jose Mourinho has all but confirmed that Chris Smalling will remain a Manchester United player after the summer transfer window shuts at 11pm tomorrow night.

Speaking to Sky Sports, the boss said:

“Against Basel, [Phil] Jones and Eric [Bailly] are both suspended so we will play Victor [Lindelof] and [Chris] Smalling and there will be no problem at all.”

Our match versus the Swiss champions that Mourinho was referring to is on Tuesday 12 September; after the summer transfer window has closed.