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Injured Valencia could return in February

Antonio Valencia suffered a dislocation and fracture in his left ankle against Rangers at Old Trafford.
Antonio Valencia suffered a dislocation and fracture in his left ankle against Rangers at Old Trafford.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Manchester United's Antonio Valencia is expected to be out of action until February
  • Valencia suffered a broken ankle in Tuesday's Champions Leagu game against Rangers
  • Manager Alex Ferguson said : "He's a strong boy and he is very positive about it."

(CNN) -- Manchester United winger Antonio Valencia could return to action in February, manager Alex Ferguson told the English Premier League club's official website.

Valencia dislocated and fractured his left ankle after tangling with Rangers defender Kirk Broadfoot in a UEFA Champions League match on Tuesday, and it was feared he may miss the remainder of the season.

However, Ferguson allayed these concerns, saying the injury was not as bad as first thought.

"Antonio had his operation and it was successful. The break was clean and we were delighted to announce that. It was a major concern for us at the time."

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The 68-year-old Scot is hopeful Valencia may still be able to play a part in the Premier League season, and has praised the attitude of the former Wigan player.

"There is ligament damage but we are looking at the end of February, which is better than we thought on Tuesday night. He is a strong boy and he is very positive about it -- being positive helps in these situations."