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Finally, Some Good News Concerning Injuries

As I wrote about earlier this week, United have had a ridiculous time with injuries so far this season. Whilst we’ve had fighting talk from several players this week, the injuries have certainly been a concern to me.

“The manager has chopped and changed this season already, whether that be due to injuries, or suspensions or whatever and we have coped with it, just as we coped with what happened in Kiev. It just proves the value of having a good squad,” boasted Giggs. Certainly, we do have a good squad, and the lads playing in the Ukraine this week, with several key first XI players missing, showed how important our strength in depth is.

Still, that doesn’t mean I’m not over the moon to hear that Owen Hargreaves is available to start against Middlesbrough on Saturday. In a rare Saturday three o’clock match, Hargreaves is set to start in the centre of the midfield, and should be partnered by Anderson, who proved his worth on Tuesday. I am usually aware of a massive hole in our midfield when Scholes isn’t on the field, but that wasn’t as apparent when Anderson was doing the job against Dynamo Kiev.

“Owen is fit to start,” said Ferguson. “It’s been frustrating for him, missing games is not what he came here for. He’s come here for a big fee and he must be a bit disappointed with the way things have gone. But it is a long season and he is back now which is terrific news for us because it gives us a better chance of doing well.”

Whilst stunning on the attack, we looked more than a little shaky at the back, and it wasn’t for the first time this either. The added muscle of Hargreaves sitting in front of our defence should work wonders for the team. His display during the derby was enough to leave most reds excited with ideas of what was to come, and I certainly am looking forward to seeing him play again at the weekend.

The good news doesn’t end there though. Both Gary Neville and Michael Carrick should be fit for our game against Arsenal next weekend. Neville, who has been “two to three weeks” away from returning since March, should be playing for the reserves against Stockport next Thursday, and Carrick will be available, assuming all goes well with the scan he is set to have after the weekend. “Neville has been doing a lot of training,” continued Ferguson. “He just needs a game which we are trying to arrange for him. He should be fit in seven days. Michael Carrick goes for a scan on Monday. If he gets the all-clear to start training, he will be available for Arsenal.”

After all this positive news regarding injuries, the only negative came when Ferguson spoke about Scholes, who was ruled out of our Champions League game after knee troubles on Monday. “The first scan did not show the problem clearly, so we are sending him to see a specialist on Monday to try and find out what the damage is and how we deal with it,” explained Ferguson. “Hopefully it is not going to be a long one.”

What or who has made the difference for United during this recent bout of injuries? Which players returning from injury deserve to walk straight back in to the starting XI?

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. keaneO says:

    Lets hope hargreaves stays fit for the Arsenal game. A Hargreaves and Anderson midfield sounds good to me.

  2. slayer says:

    of all the new players tevez has been the most impressive – he’s been running around all over the field chasing balls like a rabid dog on crack with a thermometer shoved up his a**. the only thing tevez hasn’t been able to do (so far) is find the back of net – but i think he’s bolstered our front line tremendously just by his contagious enthusiasm.

    saha has been a huge disappointment, if he got over his injuries, he’d be one of the top strikers in league. but i think we’ve been patient enough with saha – he needs to go…

    i don’t think neville should be an automatic selection for the arsenal game – he needs to win his place back. don’t get me wrong i’m a huge neville fan but o’shea, simpson and pique have juggled themselves around defensively quite well….and they deserve to be on the pitch – until we know the old g.neville is back!!

  3. Hugo says:

    Really glad Hargreaves is back – hopefully he can stay fit for the rest of the season. It will be really good to see him play again, and hopefully he can make the real difference down at the Emirates

  4. Kris says:

    Would love to see all 3 of them (Carrick, Hargreaves, Neville) play against Arsenal. Brown is in good form but the Neviller is just class.

  5. AnekinManU says:

    Hargreaves is our European Weapon!!!

  6. smally says:

    I look forward to see our captain back in business. If he is 100% fit, I think he should start, even though Pique, Simpson, Brown and O’Shea have played very well.

    I also think Brown gets better and better at the offensive part of the game, where the left- and rightbacks of United should be good.

    I must say that I really look forward to see Park Ji-sung come back from injury. I thought he was outstanding last year, and he never stops to run, just like Tevez and Rooney.

    Owen Hargreaves kind of suprised me. It seemed like he had played for United for years, he isn’t that compact player that is extremely good in every acspect of the game, but he knows what he is good at, and use it for it’s good. He is outstanding defensivly, and I really look forward to see his long shoots in the back of the net soon (as far as he doesn’t get injured again, which easily can happen. Just hope it isn’t another Saha).

    Versus Middlesbrough I hope we see VdS – Evra, Vidic, Ferdinand, Brown – Giggs, Hargreaves, Anderson, Ronaldo – Tevez, Rooney.

    Sorry for my bad English.

  7. Unitednigerian says:

    Hargreaves should be in the starting line up against arsenal if everything goes well against boro and in training next week. i still think wes and anderson should retain their places for the arsenal match…even if gary and michael are fit to play.Wes has become a better RB with each match this season…and although he’s not the same threat going forward as gary is…i’d say he’s much closer that he was at the start of the season and he’s as good a defender.


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