Darren Fletcher has been named on the bench for Manchester United in tonight’s pre-season friendly against Aberdeen.

“Darren joined in for four or five days last week,” Mike Phelan said last week. “We decided that, if he felt well enough and felt good, we’d bring him into a training session. That’s developed a little bit longer than what we actually thought. I don’t know what the position is but if Scotland want to take him, it’s probably just to be part of the squad and to introduce him back into that. But there’s a long, long way yet for Darren Fletcher before we see him playing again.”

It’s great to just see Fletcher pull on his football socks and be back on the playing field, even if it is going to be a substitute appearance in a friendly game. It’s a long way back for him to play for United and he may never become a regular starting XI member again – and to see his courage and determination in the face of that is heart-warming.

Starting XI: De Gea, M. Keane, Blackett, Thorpe, Ferdinand, Powell, Anderson, Macheda, Bebe, Giggs, Scholes.

Bench: L Cole, Blackmore, Johnstone, Fletcher, Fortune, Januzaj, Yorke.

“Well, it’s been a quiet progress for the boy, he joined in the training a couple of weeks ago and it’s one of these situations you say ‘let’s see how he does’ because he has had a real difficult time in the last year and therefore I wasn’t really placing too much hope in it, and let’s see how he does,” said Ferguson. “But he’s got to the stage now where he feels he needs a game, he’s been training really well. I’ve let him join in the Scotland squad this week for their game and he wanted a bit of a game, so I said ‘well, come up to Aberdeen, and you can join up with Scotland after it’ – so we’ll give him maybe 20-25 minutes.”




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