Antonio Valencia is set to hand Manchester United a major boost ahead of their game with Arsenal by returning ahead of schedule after he suffered a broken hand. The Ecuadorian defender underwent surgery to rectify the damage after he broke his arm during the Red Devils' League Cup win over Manchester City.

The full back was expected to be out for a few weeks after he was pictured wearing a cast following the procedure, but has returned to training ahead of schedule. The Daily Mail reports that the defender could be fit for Arsenal's visit to Old Trafford on Saturday (19 November), which will come as a big boost to Jose Mourinho, who is facing a bit of a crisis in defence at the moment.

Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly are ruled out for at least another four weeks with a toe and knee injury respectively, leaving Marcos Rojo, Daley Blind and Phil Jones as the manager's only options at centre-back. Matteo Darmian made his first appearance of the season against Swansea and was expected to start again against the Gunners. But the return of regular right-back Valencia will give the United defence more solidity going into the crunch clash.

Jones also recently returned from a long spell on the sidelines, but could occupy the centre-back spot alongside Rojo for the game with Blind playing at left-back and Luke Shaw still not fully fit. Marouane Fellaini is also a doubt after the Belgian pulled out of international duty with an injury sustained during their 3-1 win over Swansea.

Antonio Valencia
Antonio Valencia broke his hand during United's League Cup win over Manchester City on 27 October Getty

Wayne Rooney is also on the treatment table as the United skipper withdrew from the England squad ahead of their game against Spain with a knee injury. Gareth Southgate revealed that it was a minor injury, but it is unclear if he would be fit ahead of the visit of Arsene Wenger's team.