Ole Gunnar Solskjaer backing Darren Fletcher's return to the top
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is backing Darren Fletcher to complete a remarkable return to top-level action.
Last Updated: 21/11/13 9:32am
Fletcher has not featured for Manchester United for almost a year as he continues to battle a serious ulcerative colitis condition.
Solskjaer - now managing Molde in his homeland - is optimistic his former Old Trafford team-mate will soon be backing galvanising the United midfield.
He said: "It's fantastic news that Darren is on his way back. I was over in Manchester about a month ago and I was lucky enough to bump into Fletch and he said he was on the road to recovery.
"I just met him purely by chance outside the supermarket and it was great to see him. I could see just from talking to him that his tail was really up because he's had a rough time of it, obviously.
"It's funny to think I played in his Scotland debut in Oslo. I remember that game well, we actually swapped shirts afterwards and I've still got it at home - I was thinking of digging it out and putting it on for the game on Tuesday night.
"I actually played in Fletch's reserve team debut for Manchester United, I was in the reserves quite a lot!
"I'm not sure he was even 16 at that time but I remember it was a game at Everton and you could just see then that you were watching a fantastic talent.
"He'd had loads of injury problems but I knew the manager had really, really good faith in him and I could see even in that very first reserve game just why Alex Ferguson had such high hopes for this kid.
"I've followed his career from that day on because I knew he was a special player but also because he is a good guy.
"I admired his mentality, he was never in awe of the place and he just felt at ease and felt at home at Old Trafford.
"He had confidence in himself but he was humble. He had a tremendous work rate as well and the thing that stood out for me was the way he almost floated on the pitch, gliding through games.
"It came naturally to him and made the hard part of the game look easy. I knew Fletch was going to be a legend for Scotland and hopefully now he'll get back fit and improve even further to become a better player.
"To be honest I do know how hard it must be for him because I had a spell out for two and a half to three years myself after a bad knee injury.
"There's nothing worse than that feeling of not really knowing whether you're going to be able to make a comeback but luckily now it looks like it's going to happen and I couldn't be happier for him."
Fletcher - whose last appearance was as a substitute in the 4-3 win against Newcastle United on Boxing Day last year - completed a 90-minute run out for the reserves against Stoke City earlier this month.