Hargreaves is still no nearer to renewing his United career

Manchester United have said that Owen Hargreaves has still not returned to his club from the care of a surgeon in the United States – a development which underlines that his inclusion in the club's Premier League squad may not provide any real reassurance about his chances of playing again.

Ferguson has not had to omit any members of his first team squad by including Hargreaves – United have actually taken up only 23 of the 25 places available to them – and by doing so has at least kept alive some prospect of Hargreaves renewing his career at United, for whom he has made only one brief substitute's appearance in the last two years. The 29-year-old's inclusion in the squad has been accompanied by reports from some quarters that he is back in training at Carrington.

But United have made it clear that the he is still in Colorado, under the care of surgeon Richard Steadman. Hargreaves is "still receiving treatment in the US for a tendonitis problem that has limited him to one substitute appearance since September 2008," the club said. Ferguson has been either unable or unwilling to offer any sense as to whether Hargreaves is on the mend after his latest period under the care of Steadman. "Nope", was his answer on the subject when asked more than two weeks ago whether the defensive midfielder was back.

Meanwhile, the Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan defended the decision to allow the DW Stadium to be used as a holding station for 3,000 Rangers fans before this month's Champions League group stage match at Old Trafford.

Whelan said that "the last time Rangers fans came to Wigan they were absolutely brilliant" – though soon after he spoke, all but one of the 12 Rangers fans who took part in what was described in a court as Manchester's worst scenes of destruction "since the blitz" – before the 2008 Uefa Cup final against Zenit St Petersburg – were told they were to be jailed. Scott McSeveney was jailed for three and a half years at Manchester Crown Court for violent disorder and an assault on PC John Goodwin, who was attacked by fans before the game.

The officer was only saved after another Rangers fan, Sharon Gibson, lay across him while her boyfriend shouted: "You are letting the team down!"

Mark Stoddart, 27, was jailed for two and a half years for violent disorder and assaulting another officer, PC Mick Regan, and also given an eight-year football banning order.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas