Paul Scholes Gary NevilleThe strength of United’s squad has really been tested this season, with the team being hit by injuries in every position. Wesley Brown and Anderson/Hargreaves/Carrick have meant the injuries to Paul Scholes and Gary Neville haven’t been too costly.

Neville last played for us in March of last season, seeing out just eleven minutes of our clash against Bolton before colliding with Gary Speed left him unable to continue. The injury was expected to rule him out for three weeks, but his return day has been continually put back since that time just to aggravated and new injuries.

Scholes last played for United in October, but the need for knee surgery kept him out for the rest of 2007. The initial prediction was for him to return to the first team for our away trip to Tottenham Hotspur at the beginning of February.

Sir Alex Ferguson has today given an update on our two veteran players, claiming both are on course for their return. “Gary Neville’s training with the team,” he said. “What we need to do with Gary is get him a game. The Reserves league is closed down of course during the Christmas period, but once that starts up that’s one avenue. We have to look about, maybe even practice matches and that sort of thing to get some more intensity into his training. Game situations will bring him on a good bit. We’re happy with his progress, we’re assured he’s ok now and it’s just a matter of getting him games.” He continued, “Paul’s doing nice, easy running now. That was the plan. He’s out of the pot he was in and the time we set for him was roundabout February, and I don’t think we’ll be far off. Probably the middle of February to be on the safe side, but he’s certainly doing very well.”

Will both players claim their first team places as soon as they return to fitness?