Defensive duo fit for United

The pair both sat out last week's home win over Bolton after failing to recover from the after-effects of a collision during the previous week's Manchester derby. However, Ferguson reported both have trained this week and should be involved at the Emirates Stadium.

"Phil and Chris will be fit," said Ferguson.

Ferguson also confirmed long-term absentees Ashley Young and Tom Cleverley had started doing some "serious running".

"They are doing a good running programme at the moment and their fitness levels are good," said the United boss.

And for Cleverley at least, that means a potential comeback in the middle of February.

"I am hopeful in 10 days' time, he will be playing football on the training side of it.

"That is the plan anyway, unless there is any recurrence. We can kick on and then it depends how he does in the training.

"His fitness levels should be fine and if that is correct, he could cope right away. You are talking about a week."

Source: PA

Source: PA