Giggs likely to return for derby battle

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The Independent Online

Ryan Giggs has been training in secret for an unexpected return in the Manchester derby. Giggs, who felt a twinge in his hamstring as United stuttered past Dynamo Kiev in the Champions' League, and missed last Saturday's victory over Middlesbrough, had a rigorous work-out at the team's Carrington HQ and seemed fit.

Ryan Giggs has been training in secret for an unexpected return in the Manchester derby. Giggs, who felt a twinge in his hamstring as United stuttered past Dynamo Kiev in the Champions' League, and missed last Saturday's victory over Middlesbrough, had a rigorous work-out at the team's Carrington HQ and seemed fit.

Reports from Old Trafford that Giggs will not make the Maine Road battle appear to be the latest mind games by Sir Alex - even if he is in South Africa for his son's wedding.

Giggs was kept company in training last week by Roy Keane, whose international absence was agreed to by the Republic of Ireland manager, Mick McCarthy. Keane was told he could have time off and spent a couple of days with his mother, who has suffered a stroke. His hamstring should be clear for the encounter with City.

United will be questioned over the new Nike contract and the Alison Ryan issue by Shareholders United at today's AGM at Old Trafford. Shareholders United have reservations about the club's record £302.9m, 13-year kit deal with the American sports company Nike, which starts at the end of next season.

The shareholders group also wants answers over the botched appointment of Ryan as the club's first director of communications. Ryan resigned before taking up the newly-created post when it was revealed she had lied on her CV.

Shareholders also want to raise other issues, such as the shake-up of the transfer system, directors' pay, the club's charitable activities, the future of Ferguson and the renegotiation of players' contracts.

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