Manager of Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag said that Antony could make his return to football in the Champions League tie against Galatasaray at home, on Tuesday amidst an ongoing investigation on allegations of abuse against the Brazillian international.
The 23-year-old winger has strongly denied the accusations against him and was given an extended leave of absence by United on September 10.
He returned to England last week and attended a voluntary interview with Greater Manchester Police on Thursday.
He trained last weekend and could now play against Turkish champions Galatasaray at Old Trafford, a month on from his last appearance at Arsenal.
“Antony will be in consideration, but yesterday was his first time back in team training,” United manager Ten Hag told a pre-match press conference on Monday.
“We have a final training (session) and then we make a decision, but he will be in consideration, yeah.”
Antony is facing several accusations of physical aggression towards his former girlfriend Gabriela Cavallin, who spoke to Brazilian media earlier this month.
The winger has denied those allegations, as well as further assault claims made by two other women.
He has not been arrested or charged in either Brazil or in Britain and he left the voluntary interview, where he presented evidence to support his strenuous denials, without any restrictions.
Ten Hag, asked what Antony’s return to the squad said to victims of domestic violence, said: “So, he cooperated fully,” having not heard the initial question. “It came out he’s not charged, so…”
Antony’s fellow forward Jadon Sancho remains sidelined, with full-backs Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Luke Shaw, Tyrell Malacia and Sergio Reguilon out injured, while Amad Diallo and Kobbie Mainoo have been unable to feature this season.
Now centre-back Lisandro Martinez is facing up to three months on the sidelines after the Argentina international underwent surgery following a fractured metatarsal in April’s Europa League quarter-final first leg against Sevilla.
Martinez returned to action this season but an aggravation of that foot injury means he faces a fresh operation.
“I can confirm Licha Martinez will have to undergo surgery,” Ten Hag said. “So, the team news is probably Antony dos Santos can return.”
United head into Tuesday’s match desperately needing a win following a 4-3 defeat by Bayern Munich in their Champions League opener and Saturday’s 1-0 loss to Crystal Palace.
That Old Trafford defeat came after back-to-back wins, with Ten Hag saying: “Of course we are disappointed about the result.
“Then you have to analyse the game, where were the problems, then you have to move forward, but also give solutions for the problems.”
Marcus Rashford’s performances are under particular scrutiny, with the England international having scored just once this season following 30 goals in all competitions last term.
“The facts are that he is not scoring in this moment, but also he had the opportunities,” Ten Hag said of Rashford.
“I think, for instance, in the game against Brighton, there were five or six occasions when he was in a very good spot.
“If he works hard and if he invests every day, goes into every game with the right focus and if the team also around him supply him, help him and support him with movement then it will come.”
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – AFP)