Date: 6th January 2007 at 2:38pm
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Larsson here, Rossi back, Saha’s injury minor, Solskjaer is fit again and in tremendous form: circumstances do not exactly favour Alan Smith who could not fight his way back into the team after recovering from injury.

Smudger has been linked with a number of teams, including Aston Villa, Everton and his former club Leeds United. The latest of his chasers are Wigan whose manager Paul Jewell is thought to be looking for a striker and he’s reportedly in favour of bringing Smith to the JJB on loan after a bid for Nathan Ellington had been rejected by West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace.

The Latics scored 23 league goals this season and that’s not exactly bad but their 17th position suggest they should happily accept everyone who could strengthen the team.

Smith has turned down all offers so far but he obviously does not figure in Sir Alex’s short-term plans (his long term plans are difficult to find out) that he perhaps should think about a move to get some regular football.

However, I can understand his reluctance to accept a loan deal. We’ve seen so many players over the years who simply never returned from a loan deal that was meant to be short-term in the first place. With a number of high-profile strikers linked with United, Smith might be concerned he would never get a recall to the team and he would definitely have a point.

Of course all of the above is just speculation as I never talked to Smith…