Ferguson fears stalwart Neville has played his last game for United


Sir Alex Ferguson has cast doubt over whether Manchester United defender Gary Neville will play again.

The Old Trafford manager was contradictory when he declared his wish to hand the captaincy back to Neville.


Happy times: Cristiano Ronaldo, Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney of Manchester United pose with the Carling Cup trophy in the dressing room after United beat Wigan Athletic

Ferguson said: 'I am hopeful Gary Neville can come back. I am sure he can. At 33, it is always difficult if you have been out of the game for a year. But Neville is such a determined character. You would not bet against him coming back.

'He's not bitter about having to fight for his place. He is a low-key type of lad who neither gets up nor down. But he has a great determination and that gives him a chance to return. He is club captain so that is another incentive.'

Ryan Giggs or Rio Ferdinand chiefly captained the side last season. Neville has missed more than a year with ankle and calf problems and endured several abortive comebacks before finally returning against Roma in April.

The right back has remained defiant in the face of his injuries and has said he hopes to be ready to play a full part again as United look to defend their Barclays Premier League title.

No comments have so far been submitted. Why not be the first to send us your thoughts, or debate this issue live on our message boards.

We are no longer accepting comments on this article.

Who is this week's top commenter? Find out now