Manchester United full-back Luke Shaw made his return to training on Monday for the first time since suffering a double fracture in his leg last September.
The 20-year-old England international was back out on the grass with a United physio as he enters the final stages of a long rehabilitation period from an injury he sustained in a Champions League tie with PSV in Eindhoven.
Shaw’s appearance at training was confirmed by United team-mate Juan Mata, who uploaded a picture of the pair on Instagram with the caption: “My friend @lukeshaw23 just came in from running out on the pitch! Getting closer”
Three days ago United boss Louis van Gaal confirmed that Shaw would be back on the training pitch this week, though he also suggested that it was unlikely he would feature again before a campaign that could conclude with an FA Cup final at Wembley on May 21.
Nine days before that showpiece game Roy Hodgson is set to his name his England squad for Euro 2016, which means Shaw may miss out on the tournament in France too.
“Luke Shaw shall start next week the first training sessions on the pitch,” Van Gaal said on Friday.
“It was always in the gym, on the treadmill, in the swimming pool and so on, but now he can train for the first time with his bodyweight on the pitch, so it is going great for Luke Shaw.
“But, also, it shall be very difficult for him to play the final of the FA Cup.”