Fletcher misses Man U’s Pre-Season tour of America

Manchester: Darren Fletcher will miss Manchester United`s forthcoming pre-season tour as the Premier League champions head to the USA

The 26-year-old succumbed to a long-term virus that left him sidelined for large parts of last season, including the Champions League final against Barcelona at Wembley.

Fletcher has been spared the demands of transatlantic travel in a bid to help him be fit for the start of the new season with the club hopeful he could feature in Paul Scholes` testimonial against New York Cosmos on August 5 or the Community Shield against Manchester City on August 7.

A club spokesman stated: "Darren [Fletcher] will remain at Carrington to undergo an individualised conditioning programme given he missed a large proportion of last season.

1"This will help him catch up fitness-wise to the levels of the rest of the team.

"We tried to accelerate things but we want to give him the best opportunity to be fully fit for the new season. We feel a reduction in the amount of time Darren spends travelling will help him achieve this."

Manchester United have also released their squad numbers for the new season, with Ashley Young taking Scholes` No. 18 shirt, David De Gea the new No. 1 left vacant by Edwin van der Sar`s retirement, and Phil Jones will take the No. 4 previously worn by Owen Hargreaves.

The champions will take an initial 21-man squad to America, with new signings David de Gea and Phil Jones joining the squad later due to their exertions at the U21 European Championships and Chris Smalling, Danny Welbeck, Tom Cleverly and Javier Hernandez also arriving later after being granted extended leave.

The Red Devils are set to play five pre-season games in the USA, with New England Revolution their first opponents on the 13th of July.


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