By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens
Luke Shaw is in line to start training again next month and remains hopeful of playing again for Manchester United this season, Football Insider sources understand.
The left-back has been sidelined since suffering a double-leg fracture against PSV Eindhoven in the Champions League in September.
The injury was so severe that United internally ruled the England international out of playing again this season but Louis van Gaal showed faith in Shaw’s powers of recovery by including his name in the squad’s Europa League roster.
A United source has told Football Insider that Shaw is ahead of schedule in his rehabilitation and has been pencilled in for a return to training next month, although it will a few more weeks after that before he would be in contention for a first-team return.
England manager Roy Hodgson left the door open for Shaw to return to the national team last week when he hinted that there could still be a place for the former Southampton man at Euro 2016.
The 20-year-old is first concentrating getting fit for his club and one carrot is the possibility of playing in the latter stages of the Europa League.
United, who face Liverpool on Thursday in the first leg of their titanic last-16 Europa League clash, are aiming to reach the final of the competition, which takes place in Basle on 18 May.
In other Manchester United injury news, Antonio Valencia, Phil Jones and Marouane Fellaini are closing in on first-team returns.