Pair of summer signings to return to United squad for Boxing Day

Manchester United are going to receive a welcome Christmas boost with the news that Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw could be in contention for the boxing day game against Newcastle at Old Trafford.

Herrera missed Saturday’s draw against Aston Villa due to a “small muscular injury” but later posted on his Facebook page: “I can’t be with the team today due to a little injury, but I will be ready again soon. Cheers to everyone!”. He could reclaim his place in the starting line-up replacing Darren Fletcher who had a torrid afternoon after making his first start since August.

Shaw has been out for more than a month with an ankle ligament injury which he suffered in the win over Arsenal at the Emirates but was pictured back in training last week. He is on course to return later this week taking into consideration the fact that Van Gaal likes his players to train for two weeks before they come into first team contention.

Marouane Fellaini was absent from the United first XI for the Villa game due to illness but he should have recovered to be available for selection on Friday. Marcos Rojo could also return to the first team squad having missed the last two games due to a “thigh strain”.