The Fulham skipper is sure Chris Smalling will be a big hit at Old Trafford, where he’s been watching a cracking Manchester derby this evening.

I was fortunate enough to see players like Michael Owen and Steven Gerrard when they were young lads. Being a defender, Chris is different and he is not quite on their level yet but he is potentially a wonderful player. He has great pace is calm on the ball and good in the air. What more do you need from a good centre-half? He’ll be a great asset to his new club and he won’t look out of place.

He showed against Tottenham and he showed at Chelsea a few weeks ago that he’s very capable already for a 20-year-old. I think the more you see of him as a player, and you deal with him as a person, you’ll see he’s very cool, calm and collected. He’s obviously got a lot going on at the moment and it has been a big few days for him but he’s handled it brilliantly. Considering what is going on in his life, his performance against Tottenham was very good.

You know when there’s a good player coming along. I think the only thing that’s been a little bit of a shock is how quickly he’s progressed.