Robin van Persie has returned to training and Manchester United are waiting to see if he will be fit enough to make his comeback against Sunderland on Saturday.
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The former Arsenal captain suffered a knee injury after scoring a Champions League hat trick against Olympiakos in March, prompting fears his season had come to a premature end.
But Van Persie has undergone treatment in his native Netherlands and is now working with his United teammates again, meaning he could be available for interim manager Ryan Giggs’ second game in charge.
Giggs told national newspapers: “We’ll just have to wait and see how he goes this week. He came back last Friday and he trained well. He just needs to work on his fitness now so, yeah, he looked great.”
Van Persie has scored 17 goals in 25 goals for United in an injury-hit campaign but has not found the net in the Premier League since February.
Giggs showed a preference for playing two strikers in his first game at the helm, pairing Wayne Rooney and Danny Welbeck in the 4-0 win against Norwich.
Van Persie’s swifter-than-expected return is also a boost for Netherlands ahead of the World Cup. The 30-year-old is his country’s 41-goal record scorer.