Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera is in line to make his return to first-team action after an impressive display for the Under-21s in a game which also saw defender Tom Thorpe stretchered off with an injury.

Herrera, a £30m summer signing from Athletic Bilbao, starred for United in a 5-0 with over Blackburn Rovers in the Lancashire Senior Cup on Tuesday, marking his display by scoring his side's second.

The 25-year-old suffered fractured ribs in United's 2-1 win over West Ham United in September. He made a premature return against West Bromwich Albion three weeks later but struggled physically so soon after his return and has not featured since, despite taking a place on the substitute's bench in United's last four games.

Herrera added his well-taken goal in the first half and was given the freedom to dictate the tempo of the game as United dominated the midfield.

There was a further casualty for United however, as Under-21 captain Thorpe was taken off with a suspected ankle problem.

Thorpe made a brief-first team debut for United this season amid the injury crisis that has ravaged their backline but Louis van Gaal's preference for Paddy McNair at centre half has seen his opportunities limited.

United are expected to release a statement on Thorpe's condition on Wednesday.

Jonny Evans also featured for the reserves on Tuesday as he nears his return from an ankle injury suffered during his side's 5-3 defeat to Leicester City in September.

The Northern Ireland international has missed his side's last seven games amid an injury crisis that also sidelined Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Rafael da Silva at the back.

Evans is expected to be ready for the next Premier League game against Hull City on Saturday 29 November after back-to-back victories against Crystal Palace and Arsenal.