Roma’s sporting director Gianluca Petrachi has confirmed Roma are keen to sign Chris Smalling on a permanent deal – and it is now down to the Manchester United star.
The 30-year-old joined the Serie A side on a season-long loan last summer after falling down the pecking order at United.
Smalling has impressed in Italy, making 20 appearances in all competitions and helping his side to fourth place in the table.
United are believed to have slapped a £25million price tag on the defender, and although it remains to be seen if Roma will meet that valuation, the Italians are keen on keeping him in Rome.
“There is a chance,” Petrachi told the Daily Mail when asked if Smalling could sign permanently.
“The player will choose what to do. If he really wishes, we will be happy to have him with us permanently.
“We are very happy with Smalling and he knows it. With Manchester United, the relationship is excellent, we have an excellent feeling with the club.”
Smalling appears happy in the Italian capital, having taking little time to settle into his new surroundings.
Petrachi added: “The boy is charismatic. He loves Rome and the Italian lifestyle.
“I think it’s obvious how it sounds: it’s finally peaceful. Smalling finds himself very well in Rome, lives well and has returned to great levels.
“He follows an Italian course to improve his grasp of the language. This made me very happy because it shows that the boy is intelligent.
“Technically he is very strong. I think it is fundamental for a sporting director to understand how some players can do well. I thought this move could work and I’m happy that the results prove me right.”