Smallbone has been part of Southampton's ranks since the age of 8 and had previously been linked with clubs like Sheffield United. However, this new deal puts an end to any potential move away, at least for the time being.
The 23-year-old is highly regarded by coaches both at the club and international levels. Smallbone made his debut for Ireland in March against Latvia and left a strong impression in the 3-2 victory at the Aviva Stadium.
Speaking about his fresh contract, Smallbone confirmed that the plan to sign the extension had been in progress for some time. He expressed his excitement about collaborating with the new manager, Russell Martin, as they aim to secure a return to the Premier League next season.
“It’s been in the works for a little while now, so I’m happy to finally get it over the line and looking forward to the future,” Smallbone commented on the new agreement in a club statement.
“And for me, coming back after not being here last year, returning and witnessing the changes and everything that’s unfolded, it's been a breath of fresh air.
"The best is yet to come from everyone." ✊
Watch @WSmallbone react to signing a new deal:
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) August 28, 2023
“I was really excited to work with the manager, having played against them last year and being familiar with their style of play. I thought it was something that would truly benefit me.
“And yes, that belief and positivity in the side and in myself, it has only grown since I’ve come back. I’ve really enjoyed it.”
Jason Wilcox, the Director of Football, added: “Will has been with us since the age of eight and comprehends exactly what it signifies to represent this club.
“He has wholeheartedly embraced Russell’s philosophy and has already demonstrated how crucial he is to our project. I'm delighted that he has committed to this new contract.”
Smallbone might receive a call-up for Ireland's upcoming Euro 2024 matches against the Netherlands and France next month. Stephen Kenny is set to reveal his team on Thursday.