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Rooney, Martial return to training

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 Manchester United's Bastian Schweinsteiger (R) celebrates with teammates Paddy McNair and Jesse Lingard (2nd L) after scoring during the Premier League match against Watford at Vicarage Road Stadium on November 21, 2015. PHOTO/AFP

Manchester United’s Bastian Schweinsteiger (R) celebrates with teammates Paddy McNair and Jesse Lingard (2nd L) after scoring during the Premier League match against Watford at Vicarage Road Stadium on November 21, 2015. PHOTO/AFP

MANCHESTER, November 24- Manchester United strikers Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial both returned to training on Tuesday ahead of their side’s Champions League home game with PSV Eindhoven.

The two players missed United’s 2-1 win at Watford in the Premier League on Saturday, captain Rooney due to illness and Martial because of a foot injury sustained on international duty with France.

Midfielder Marouane Fellaini also took part in training at United’s Carrington training base after two games out with a calf injury.

But Phil Jones (ankle) and Ander Herrera (hamstring), injured against Watford, did not participate, while Bastian Schweinsteiger was absent due to an unspecified problem.

Michael Carrick, who hurt his ankle on England duty was also not present, along with long-term absentees Luke Shaw and Antonio Valencia.

United top Group B and will qualify for the Champions League last 16 if they beat PSV at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

-Last-16 on view-

United manager Louis van Gaal hopes to cock another snook at his critics when his team host Eindhoven needing victory to progress.

Despite ongoing criticism over the quality of their football, United climbed to second place in the Premier League table after edging Watford 2-1 on Saturday and will have an opportunity to take over at the summit this weekend when they visit surprise leaders Leicester City.

A place in the Champions League last 16 will be theirs if they prevail at Old Trafford on Wednesday and for all the brickbats being flung at him by pundits and former United players such as Paul Scholes, Van Gaal knows that he is fulfilling his objectives.

“If we beat PSV, then we will have qualified,” he told MUTV.

“It is very important to win, but it is not easy because every game you have to play you cannot say we will beat them.

“PSV also beat Wolfsburg and I think that they are a very good team. They also beat Manchester United, of course.”

United’s chances of progressing from Group B were jeopardised when they lost 2-1 in Eindhoven in their opening game on September 15, but subsequent home wins over Wolfsburg and CSKA Moscow, as well as a 1-1 draw in Moscow, have taken them to the top of the group.

Memphis Depay marked his reunion with PSV by netting United’s opener at the Philips Stadion and like his club, his status has evolved in the two months since.

Depay was dropped following United’s 3-0 loss at Arsenal on October 4 and was a substitute in five of the next six games before making a goal-scoring return to the starting XI at Watford on Saturday, where Troy Deeney’s cruel 90th-minute own goal gave the visitors victory.

Dovetailing with youth-team graduate Jesse Lingard in attack, Depay put United in front with an adroit 11th-minute volley and afterwards credited assistant manager Ryan Giggs with helping him regain confidence.

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 PSV Eindhoven players celebrate at the end of the Champions League match against VfL wolfsburg at the Philips Stadion on November 3, 2015. PHOTO/AFP

PSV Eindhoven players celebrate at the end of the Champions League match against VfL wolfsburg at the Philips Stadion on November 3, 2015. PHOTO/AFP

“Ryan Giggs has given me good advice and I’ve been working on some things with him,” said the Dutch international winger.

“You need that backing and you need to back yourself and train well, and of course all the help is great to get through difficult times.

“I’m happy to get the help of everyone and happy to play on Saturday to show that I can be important.”

Depay, who joined United from PSV in a reported £25 million ($37.9 million, 35.7 million euros) deal in June, could face renewed competition for a starting role.

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