Sir Alex Ferguson encouraged by Darren Fletcher’s Man United return

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is encouraged by Darren Fletcher's progress after he played in a testimonial match

sir alex ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson handed Darren Fletcher his United debut in March 2003 Photo: The Sport Review

sir alex ferguson

Sir Alex Ferguson has been encouraged by Darren Fletcher’s return to action for Manchester United after the midfielder spent the last nine months sidelined with a chronic bowel condition.

The 28-year-old, who has been suffering from ulcerative colitis, came off the bench in the Neil Simpson Testimonial against Aberdeen on Tuesday after he announced an indefinite break from football in November 2011.

Fletcher has been called up to train with Craig Levein’s Scotland squad as the United youth graduate takes a further step towards his full return, but Ferguson is keen to keep expectations grounded.

“For Darren, it’s great to be back and I hope it’s the start for him,” Ferguson told United’s website.

“We don’t know as we’re all aware he’s got this issue he needs to deal with and he’s dealing with it very well at the moment. What we’ve seen tonight is encouraging for us.

“It’s been a quiet progress for the boy. He joined in training a couple of weeks ago and it’s one of these situations where you say: ‘Let’s see how he does’ because he has had a really difficult time in the last year.

“Therefore, I wasn’t really placing too much hope in it but let’s see how he does.

“He’s got to the stage now where he feels he needs a game. He’s been training really well. I let him join Scotland this week for their game but he wanted a game so I said: ‘Come to Aberdeen and join up afterwards’.”

Fletcher has scored 23 goals in 302 appearances for the 19-time English champions after making his debut against Basel in March 2003.

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