Fergie: Owen injury not serious

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has played down fears Michael Owen will be sidelined for an extended period with a groin injury.

Reports had suggested the 31-year-old striker could miss the remainder of the season with an injury sustained in training but Ferguson insists the damage is not serious and while Owen will miss tomorrow’s FA Cup tie with Crawley at Old Trafford, he could be available for Wednesday’s Champions League trip to Marseille.

"Michael suffered a small injury during the week which will force him out tomorrow," said Ferguson.

"It is disappointing because I was going to play him but there is no point taking a risk and he could be available for the Marseille game on Wednesday."

Ferguson was happy to expand on Antonio Valencia though, who broke his ankle in September and is edging towards a first-team return.

"Antonio has done a full week with the reserves doing non-contact work," said Ferguson.

"Everything is right about him. We would hope he would get into contact work with the reserves and join us by the end of next week."