Bastian Schweinsteiger has been pictured in good spirits during training with Manchester United’s first team ahead of their FA Cup clash with Reading on Saturday.
The German was initially ostracised from the first team by Jose Mourinho during the early stages of the season, with the Portuguese insisting that he wasn’t part of his plans for the upcoming campaign.
However Schweinsteiger, against all odds, has managed to forge his way back into the first team, making an appearance from the bench against West Ham in late November.
The 32-year-old was all smiles in training at Carrington in preparation for the game against Jaap Stam’s side.
Schweinsteiger, despite looking like his normal, joyful self, finds himself in something of a precarious position at Old Trafford.
The German’s inclusion in the match-day squad for games against Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough act as faint glimmers of hope going into the second half of the season, almost as if Mourinho is dangling a faint, distant carrot in front of Schweinsteiger’s nose.
Schweinsteiger, by the looks of things, has two options: remain at Old Trafford and continue to knock on the first team door, or move overseas and descend into semi-retirement.