Darren Fletcher has told Manutd.com that he is delighted to see Owen Hargreaves back in first team training after two years injured with knee problems.
Fletcher said: “It’s great to have him back and hopefully he can stay fit now and be a really important part of the squad. The biggest thing for us is the determination and dedication he’s shown to coming back. He’s come back in the last few days and surprised everyone. He seems to be fit and doesn’t have any problems on the injury front.”
While it’s always good to see a player recover from a career threatening injury one can’t help but be sceptical about the standard and long term fitness of his game. Hargreaves came on as a substitute in May for the final few minutes of a match with Sunderland and was expected to be fit for the start of the current season. He suffered another setback over the summer though and had to return to America for a double knee operation to help his tendinitis problems.
He’s now back in first team training and things are going well. I can’t help feeling, however, that one more injury may be the end for the midfielder. If he were to pick up another problem with his knee after two years of operations and rehabilitation then it may be time to call it a day.
There’s no doubt that United have missed him while he’s been out. He’s got a comfortableness and creativity on the ball that only Scholes has in the midfield. Hargreaves though has the energy and youth that Scholes hasn’t anymore.
The number of times Sir Alex Ferguson has told the media that he’d be ready for such a date or would be fit by blah de blah leaves me doubting if he will ever really come back the same player.
It’s a hell of an ask for someone who’s had so many operations and setbacks to return to the top of his game. I hope he proves me wrong.
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