Michael Carrick and Owen Hargreaves seem set for a return to first team football for Manchester United against West Brom next week when the domestic season restarts after the international break.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said:
“We are expecting Michael to be available next week. He is almost back to full training now.
Owen is much better and we will pencil him in for the West Brom game without question.”
Carrick has been relatively injury free in the two seasons he’s been at United, hopefully he can put his recent injury behind him and stay fit, he’s the sort of player you end up relying on in crunch moments and he rarely lets you down. In fact, when you look at players like Michael Carrick and Wes Brown you might not see first-team starters but they contribute so much to a season (Brown played the most games for United last season) that United would a much poorer squad without them.
Hargreaves is a different story. When fit he ads so much to the team (not least on the right wing and on set pieces) but he’s become Saha-like with his fitness. He needs to stay fit for more than a month or two at a time otherwise he will end up, like Saha, out of the international team and shipped off to another club within an year or two. Fergie will give him as much time as possible though, he’s always stood by his players in such times.
And, I know it’s a week away, but let’s hope that Rooney stays fit over the two international games and hits the ground running with another goal against West Brom.