Smith ready to return for United after broken leg

September 7, 2006

Alan Smith insists he would be 'ready' to return as a substitute for Manchester United's Premiership match with Tottenham on Saturday.

The England international has come through three reserve outings after being given the green light to step up his comeback bid from the broken leg he suffered during last season's FA Cup defeat at Liverpool.

Smith's latest appearance came in the Manchester Senior Cup clash with Stockport at Edgeley Park on Tuesday.

And, while the game ended in a penalty shoot-out defeat for United's second string, for Smith it was a hugely beneficial exercise.

The 25-year-old accepts he is nowhere near sharp enough to be plunged back into first-team combat from the start.

However, with a big week looming for Sir Alex Ferguson's men, which sees both Celtic and Arsenal visit Old Trafford immediately after the Tottenham game, Smith knows his services could be required as a substitute.

'If the gaffer were to ask me if I would be ready for the bench against Spurs, I would say `yes' without any hesitation,' Smith told the Manchester Evening News.

'Ninety minutes of Premiership football would be very difficult at the moment but to come on as a substitute would be no problem.

'If you are playing at Old Trafford, you get that adrenaline rush and that would see you through.

'If it is not this weekend then we have the Champions League starting next week against Celtic and, with seven allowed on the bench, then there might be a chance.'