Manchester United striker Michael Owen has picked up a new injury, but boss Sir Alex Ferguson has insisted the latest setback in Owen’s career is not serious.
Owen has been fit for most of the season, but has not played many minutes after falling behind Hernandez, Rooney and Berbatov in the pecking order and would have been hoping for a run out in the FA Cup 5th round tie against non league Crawley Town at home on Saturday.
The groin injury will come as a blow to Owen after Ferguson admitted Owen had been in his thoughts for the game, which Manchester United should win with some reserve team players.
Whilst Owen will miss out on the game on Saturday, Ferguson dismissed reports that it could be another lengthily set back and said Owen could be in contention for midweek Champions League duty.
Owen, now 31, will hope to get a few more starts before the end of the season when his contract runs out.
“Michael suffered a small injury during the week which will force him out tomorrow,” said Ferguson.
“It is disappointing because I was going to play him but there is no point taking a risk and he could be available for the Marseille game on Wednesday.”
In more positive news for Manchester United fans, winger Antonio Valencia is getting close to regaining full fitness after he broke a leg playing against Rangers in the Champions League group stages earlier in the season.
“Antonio has done a full week with the reserves doing non-contact work,” said Ferguson.
“Everything is right about him. We would hope he would get into contact work with the reserves and join us by the end of next week.”