Sir Alex Ferguson has ruled out starting new signing Mame Biram Diouf in the Carling Cup semi-final first-leg against Manchester City.
Manchester United signed the striker last summer from Molde but loaned him back to the Norwegian club while they applied for a work permit.
The work permit was granted on Wednesday but the 22-year-old is yet to receive international clearance making him ineligible to face Leeds in the FA Cup third round on January 3rd.
That means the City clash will be the next available fixture but despite impressing Ferguson in training the Red Devils boss admits the Senegalese ace will have to make do with a place on the bench at best.
"Mame has been training really well," the Scot said. "We are very pleased about that.
"He can't play in the Leeds United game but hopefully we will get international clearance by the time we face Manchester City in the semi-final.
"I wouldn't have thought we will start him in that game though. It will be too early."