FOOTBALL NEWS

30/12/2011 22:30, Report by Steve Bartram

Vidic surgery successful

Nemanja Vidic is on course to return to action in the 2012/13 season, after successfully undergoing knee surgery earlier this week.

The United skipper suffered cruciate ligament damage in this month's Champions League defeat at Basel, but Sir Alex Ferguson revealed on Friday that the Serbian's resultant operation went according to plan.

"He had surgery on Wednesday and came through fine," said the manager. "They didn’t remove anything at all, everything’s clear, but it’s a cruciate so it’ll be next season."

While Vidic will miss the remainder of the Reds' 2011/12 campaign, the boss broke better news about other members of Carrington's walking wounded.

"Anderson’s coming on great," he said. "He’s showing great progress. He's trained well. We’re just monitoring him because he still has to do a lot of work in the gymnasium but he’s coming along. Fabio Da Silva’s not far away, he should be back in maybe 10 days. The centre-backs aren't long-term – they should be available in the next week or two."

Less encouraging was Sir Alex's assertion that Michael Owen and Tom Cleverley are "still nowhere near" returning to action, and he added that the latter has been sorely missed.

"Cleverley’s a massive loss," he said. "He, to my mind, is probably the best midfield player in Britain, potentially. He has fantastic promise, so it’s a loss to us."

More: Reds at the ready | Sir Alex won't buy on a whim | Vidic quit fears denied

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