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Fulham have denied reports that Arsenal have approached them about the availability of young centre back Chris Smalling.

Sky Sports led strongly on their afternoon news packages with a story suggesting that the Gunners had been in touch with Fulham over Smalling, who signed for Fulham from Maidstone United in 2008. But Fulham have angrily denied that there is anything in the story:

We have had no contact from any club whatsoever over Chris Smalling.

My Arsenal contacts have been a little more tightlipped about this rumour than the summer’s Brede Hangeland saga, but said they were surprised at how strongly Sky Sports News had been running with the story.