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06th Nov 2015

Manchester United’s forgotten forward returns to training

He's back

Patrick McCarry

‘In the shape of his life’ and gunning for a return to the senior squad.

Nick Powell was signed as a good prospect for the future back in the summer of 2012. Three years on and he has only played seven times for the club.

After badly injuring his hamstring in February and missing the rest of the season, things looked bleak for Powell – and they only got worse when when Louis van Gaal opted against giving him a squad number this summer.

However, Powell is back in training and impressing his coaches. In an interview with the club website, United U-21 coach Martin Joyce raved about the Englishman:

“Nick’s worked extremely hard. It’s been a testing time, as you expect when you’re injured and obviously out for this amount of time with an injury. But his attitude has been outstanding in the gym and out on the training field.

“I think, to be fair, he is looking in the best condition he has ever been in his life. Hopefully, he kicks on with that now when the games start coming.

“There is no doubt how much talent he has got. Some of the stuff you see from him is outstanding. He’s a high top-level talent so hopefully he can get a run of matches.”

Manchester United FC v CFR 1907 Cluj - UEFA Champions League

Joyce believes the England U-21 international can break into the senior side again if he stays injury free:

“When he came back here from his loan spells away, I thought he was flying before he got injured. People forget how young he is. He is still a young player with a very bright career in front of him.

“Like everything, he needs a little bit of luck and has got to be in the right place at the right time to grab an opportunity and make the most of it.”

Powell’s first game back, with the U-21s, is expected to be against Norwich on November 23. If he comes through that, he may be elevated to the senior squad or van Gaal could loan him out to gain further experience.