Date: 30th December 2005 at 1:18pm
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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer returned to action at Birmingham on Wednesday … for the last seven minutes. He ended an 18-month exile from senior duty when he replaced Cristiano Ronaldo at the the end of United’s 2-2 draw at St Andrews.

Although the Norwegian, who has had two rounds of knee surgery since making his last first-team appearance in the 2004 FA Cup final defeat by Millwall, was greeted with rapturous applause from the United fans.

Solskjaer: ‘The fans have been fantastic. It is surreal in a way and maybe a bit unrealistic. They have seen me come back now but hopefully they will see a few better performances from me.

‘It was a great feeling just to get back on the pitch again and to be able to wave to the supporters at the end. I am back in the squad now and available if the manager needs me. But it is going to take time to get the proper match fitness back.’