FOOTBALL NEWS

06/11/2012 19:25, Report by Nick Coppack

Smalling to feature

Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed Chris Smalling will "play a part" in Wednesday night's Champions League clash against SC Braga.

The young Manchester United and England defender has been out of action since breaking a bone in his foot during pre-season training in July but is set to return for his first competitive match since 6 May.

Two players the boss won't have at his disposal in Braga, however, are Darren Fletcher and Paul Scholes. Both midfielders were left behind in Manchester when the squad flew to Portugal on Tuesday.

Fletcher is suffering with a cold while Scholes, who hasn't featured in any of the Reds' last four fixtures, is being rested.

"Fletcher got a little bit of a cold on Sunday, and there’s no point taking him travelling with a cold," reasoned Sir Alex. "Scholesy, for the last few games I've been resting him to freshen him up a little bit. I'm just taking care of an old man, that’s all!"

Travelling squad: De Gea, Lindegaard; Rafael, Evans, Ferdinand, Buttner, Smalling, Evra; Cleverley, Giggs, Anderson, Nani, Valencia, Carrick, Young, Powell; Rooney, Welbeck, Chicharito, van Persie.

More: Braga v United preview | Sir Alex statue date confirmed

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