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Fletcher expects to return

Darren Fletcher has assured Manchester United fans that he expects to return to first-team action, despite his ongoing lay-off on medical grounds.

• Smalling suffers setback
• Fergie: Fletcher not back in training

Fletcher had established himself as a key part of Sir Alex Ferguson's squad over recent seasons, but a chronic bowel condition saw him disappear from action in December.

Such is the nature of Fletcher's condition that the possibility exists that he may never return to the level reached earlier in his career, and it has even been suggested that the Scotland international will be forced into retirement.

Fletcher does not believe that to be the case, though, and while he does not currently know when he expects to be back, the midfielder is convinced he will play for the club again.

"That's not really an option," Fletcher said of retirement in the Daily Star. "I just want to keep playing. I know one day I will be back. I'm only 28 and want to give myself every opportunity.

"I've not started training yet, but I'm listening to the doctors and just taking my time. At the moment I feel like I'm capable of coming back."

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