Smalling’s future at Man United was under scrutiny earlier in the season due to injuries and poor form but the 25-year-old has pushed on in recent weeks.
His strong performances against Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool earned some credit back from United fans which he lost after being sent off away to Manchester City.
He kept the Premier League’s most in-form striker Harry Kane in his back pocket at Old Trafford and didn’t flinch at Anfield despite how big the occasion was, both of which are a testament to how much he has improved.
Of course, this is not the first time Smalling has been linked to Arsenal as Arsene Wenger previously tried to sign him back in 2010 when he was at Fulham but United eventually beat the Gunners to his signature.
With his current deal expiring soon, United are at a crossroads with Smalling. Either he can be given a new contract or Louis van Gaal can decide to replace him with a new signing in the summer but credit where it is due as Smalling has really taken it up a gear in the last few weeks.
Out of United’s current crop of defenders, Jonny Evans looks the most likely to be shown the exit but although at one point this season it only looked like curtains for Smalling’s career as well, his recent turn of form hints there may be more yet to come and garnering any interest from Arsenal would be indicative of that.