Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal will be able to call upon his full quota of strikers for Monday night's Premier League clash against Southampton for the first time since September after Wayne Rooney returned to training ahead of the forthcoming match at St Mary's.
The Manchester Evening News reports that the Red Devils captain has successfully recovered from the knee injury suffered against Hull City last weekend, and after missing Tuesday's 2-1 victory over Stoke City is now back in contention to face the high-flying Saints next week.
Rooney underwent a scan on the problem area in midweek, and after results failed to show any serious damage he was declared fit to take part in a full session with the rest of Van Gaal's senior squad at Carrington on Friday.
The news will be welcomed by Manchester United supporters that have become accustomed to seeing their team decimated by an alarming number of injuries and suspensions this season, but despite those problems Van Gaal has still managed to orchestrate an impressive run of four consecutive victories which has lifted the Red Devils back up to fourth place in the Premier League table.
They will arrive on the south coast high in confidence ready to face a high-flying Southampton side that has recorded back-to-back defeats for the first time in 2014/15, following losses against Manchester City and Arsenal in their previous two games.
Ronald Koeman was adamant that the feel-good factor has not disappeared during his pre-match briefing on Friday, especially while his team are still occupying third spot, but the imminent return of several key players is surely an ominous warning sign for the hosts in the build-up to the game.
Radamel Falcao has been back in full training for the best part of two weeks, but due to further injury problems Van Gaal has been forced to bring the Colombian back into his matchday squads earlier than he initially would've liked.
The 28-year-old was named on the bench in each of the past two home encounters at Old Trafford, but is in serious contention to be picked from the start for the trip to Southampton on Monday.
Falcao's comeback is being managed cautiously because of the serious injury problems he suffered at AS Monaco last season, but the Manchester United backroom team are confident he is now approaching peak condition.
Van Gaal might choose to name Rooney, Falcao and Robin van Persie in his starting XI, just like he did in the 2-1 victory over West Ham United in September, or alternatively the Red Devils coach might seize the opportunity to rest the under-performing Dutchman, who has suffered a significant dip in form this term.
Pictures emerged on Manchester Untied's official website on Friday afternoon showing each of the three first-choice strikers in training, which is sure to delight fans all over the world ahead of the upcoming encounter.
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