SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 02: Robin Van Persie of Manchester United celebrates the winning goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Southampton and Manchestrer United at St Mary's Stadium on September 2, 2012 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Injuries have been a huge concern already for Manchester United in this young campaign -- particularly to the central-defenders. In addition, there were further injury concerns after it was reported that the likes of Robin van Persie, Shinji Kagawa, and Jonny Evans all picked up knocks while on international duty. However, during the weekly press conference of manager Sir Alex Ferguson, he revealed a bit of good news -- the trio of van Persie, Kagawa, and Evans are expected to be fit for tomorrow's tie with Wigan Athletic.
"On the injury front, everyone's fit, apart from the ones we know about – [Phil] Jones and [Chris] Smalling. Jones was a bad blow for us. He got an injury in training last weekend and he'll be out for eight to 10 weeks. We expect Smalling to be back training by the end of the month. There's a little bit of comfort in that sense, given our centre-back situation. But with Jonny [Evans] back we're in a better position than we were a couple of weeks ago. Darren's in the squad tomorrow, simply because I think it will give him a boost. It's a chance to progress. At this moment in time everything's going fine for him."
- Ferguson | Source: ManUtd.com
Fergie did not discuss Wayne Rooney nor Ashley Young but it has been expected that both attackers would be out for the Wigan match and possibly beyond. He did discuss though his worry about the distances some of his players traveled during the recent international break:
"You always have concerns about players travelling in international breaks – we had [Javier Hernandez] Chicharito, [Antonio] Valencia and [Shinji] Kagawa. They've all done it before, although with Shinji we don't know exactly how he reacts to travelling back from long distances. Hopefully he'll be okay."
It's anybody's guess as to who Sir Alex will select tomorrow. He likely is to consider the minutes that many of his squad members logged during internationals and as he mentioned, the travel distance for some players is a concern. In addition, the club has a congested fixture list coming up where they'll be involved in 7 matches in a 23-day span -- this includes an upcoming midweek UEFA Champions League tie with Galatasaray and an always toxic visit to Anfield next weekend. The squad will be rotated in the upcoming weeks and expect nearly available squad member to be involved at some point -- except for Bebe.