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Fletcher back in Scotland fold
11:10 AEST Tue Aug 7 2012

Manchester United midfielder Darren Fletcher has returned to training and will join the Scotland squad ahead of their international friendly against Australia next week.

The Scotland captain's career was seemingly in the balance when Red Devils manager Sir Alex Ferguson revealed last month the 28-year-old was yet to return to training following a long-standing chronic bowel complaint.

But Scotland manager Craig Levein confirmed on Monday Fletcher was now on his way back to playing competitive football for the first time since a Champions League tie against Benfica at Old Trafford in November.

"Darren will be with us at the weekend, he is back in training and he played 45 minutes in a practice match last week," he said.

"He is not in the squad because he has not played for Manchester United but he will come back and do a bit of training with us."

Fletcher managed only 10 appearances for United last season as they were pipped to the English Premier League title on goal difference by neighbours Manchester City.

The mystery virus first took hold towards the back end of the previous campaign and Ferguson confirmed in July that he was unsure if his compatriot would ever play again.

He last featured for Scotland in a 3-1 European Championship qualifying defeat to Spain in October but Levein revealed that if Fletcher can keep progressing he could return for the national side sooner rather than later.

"I have been in touch with him every two or three weeks throughout the summer," he said.

"I don't want to go into the medical side of things but I'm just delighted to say that he is going to do some training with us.

"We will see how he gets on between now and September and I think you'll guess that if he is fit he will be in the team."