Paul Scholes has sensationally returned to Manchester United, and has been named on the bench for Sunday's Manchester derby in the third round of the FA Cup.

27548 - Paul Scholes rejoins United until end of season

Scholes, 37, retired from professional football at the end of last season after an illustrious career with the Red Devils, though he has continued to play the game and remains in good condition. He is part of the the club's reserve team coaching staff.

Newspaper reports over the past couple of days had suggested Scholes could be about to rejoin the club where he won 10 Premier League titles, three FA Cups, two League Cups and two Champions Leagues. However, Scholes' inclusion in the team to face City on Sunday means he had already re-signed before the press speculation began.

"It's fantastic that Paul has made this decision,'' said United boss Sir Alex Ferguson. "It's always sad to see great players end their careers, but especially so when they do it early.

"But he has kept himself in great shape and I always felt that he had another season in him. It's terrific to have him back.''

Scholes said: "I've been pretty clear since I stopped playing that I miss it. I'm delighted the manager feels I can still make a contribution to the team and I'm looking forward to playing my part in trying to bring more success to this great club.''