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Ferguson: Neville close to Man Utd return

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson says skipper Gary Neville is close to a first team return.

The Times says Neville has a chance of being included in the United squad against Bolton, although Ferguson may opt to give the defender another run-out for the reserve team, at home to Manchester City's second string on Thursday. It was a year ago yesterday that Neville last played for the first team, in a 4-1 win over Bolton at Old Trafford.

The United captain has missed the 58 matches since then with a string of ankle and calf problems that raised doubts about his long-term future, but after emerging from two reserve-team matches unscathed, the player is on the verge of a return.

"I think you will find that he is involved in the team quite soon," Ferguson said.

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