Robin van Persie completed his first full training session in a month for Manchester United on Friday but remains a major doubt for the champions' lunchtime clash with Newcastle, Goal has learned.
The Dutchman has not featured for the Premier League champions since scoring in the 1-0 win over former club Arsenal at Old Trafford on November 10 because of a groin strain.
Van Persie will meet with club medical staff on Saturday morning to discover how his groin has reacted to participating in full contact training for the first time in four weeks.
David Moyes was guarded over when Van Persie could potentially return for the champions on Friday, and did not disclose that his striker had taken part in the session at Carrington.
"I don't know [when Robin will return]," he said. "We've been trying to get him back for a few weeks. But he is not ready yet. It's his groin. It's a sore groin injury and nothing desperately serious.
"We've got a few injuries. They are all making progress. Some have a chance and some don't."
United has been frustrated in its attempts to rehabilitate Van Persie back to match fitness, with club sources admitting to Goal that it is a case of "managing" his injury as best as possible without doing further damage.
Moyes said that Van Persie had a chance of facing Everton ahead of the champions' damaging 1-0 defeat to the Toffees on Wednesday night, but Goal understands that he is not yet fully match fit.
The forward's return to full training is a small boost for Moyes, though the Scot is likely to be forced to start against Newcastle without his two leading strikers, with Wayne Rooney suspended for the visit of Alan Pardew's side after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season against Everton.
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- David Moyes