Wayne Rooney could return for Liverpool clash

Wayne Rooney could return to the Manchester United starting line-up for Sunday's FA Cup third round tie with Liverpool at Old Trafford.

It appeared Rooney would be condemned to spend a spell on the sidelines when he limped off with an ankle injury at West Brom on New Year's Day.

However, the England forward startled many observers when he made his way back onto the field as United had already been reduced to 10 men.

That decision cost Rooney a chance to figure in Tuesday's win over Stoke.

But the 25-year-old has returned to training and could be in contention to face the Merseyside giants.

"If it had been serious Wayne would not have come back on last week," said Ferguson.

"Maybe it was not the right thing to do in terms of getting him ready for Tuesday's game. But he started work yesterday and we just hope that he will be all right for Sunday."

Edwin van der Sar could also be involved after a recent bout of flu, although if the veteran Dutchman does not make it, Ferguson confirmed Tomasz Kuszczak will keep his place ahead of new arrival Anders Lindegaard.

"Lindegaard is available as from today," said the United boss.

"Tomasz has performed very well in his two games with us, so it is a luxury.

"Anders has done well training-wise but he has not had any experience of the English game, so that will have a bearing.

"It depends on whether Edwin is fit of course but I would probably pick Tomasz in this particular game."

Ferguson also confirmed his intention to keep all three keepers with him for the remainder of the season, whilst releasing Ben Amos for a loan spell elsewhere.

Meanwhile, the United manager admitted there was no further indication about the recovery of Owen Hargreaves, who limped off with a hamstring injury just five minutes into his first start for over two years against Wolves in November.