United happy to remain patient with Darren Fletcher

Darren Fletcher’s career hangs in the balance as Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted that the Scotland international will not be fit and ready to play at the start of next season.

The dynamic midfielder was given a leave of absence by Manchester United last term due to a chronic bowel illness, and has been looking to recover sufficiently to get back to training.

However, the debilitating illness is still having its effect on the midfielder, and Ferguson has revealed that his countryman will not be ready to start the season with the Red Devils.

“He hasn’t started training with us. Obviously he has got great challenges ahead and we are happy to be patient with him but he won’t be starting the season,” The Telegraph report the coach as saying.

“It is unfortunate because he is such a magnificent professional and such a nice lad. But if it doesn’t work for him he knows he has a position in the club anyway,” he concluded.

Fletcher’s absence has come hand-and-hand with criticism over the United midfield, with attackers saying that Sir Alex’s contingent lack energy and a spark in the centre of the pitch.

By Gareth McKnight