Sky Sports News' official Twitter page broke the news:
Darren Fletcher ruled out for the rest of the season after undergoing surgery to resolve his Ulcerative Colitis condition #ssn— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 17, 2013
Fletcher has barely seen the field this season for the Red Devils, making just three appearances in the Premier League. The 28-year-old has refused to give up in the midst of this trying illness that has kept him out for the end of the 2011-12 campaign and much of this season.
As such a big part of United going through their youth program and being on the club since 2002, it has been quite a different club. Manager Sir Alex Ferguson has adjusted well without one of his key leaders, as the Red Devils are atop the EPL table.
The resilience of Fletcher has apparently translated to the play of the club, as United has rallied back numerous times after letting up the first goal.
As James McManus of Goal.com indicates, this issue has hampered Fletcher's ability to take the pitch over the past year, but Ferguson's bunch has answered the call. Here are Fletcher's own words on his teammates' mentality:
The never-say-die attitude is ingrained in this club...We will fight right to the very end – and the history of the club definitely plays a part.There is a psychological factor of going into the last 10 minutes knowing United will throw everything at them. They withdraw because they realise what is coming.
Much of that aforementioned history is thanks to Fletcher, who has most notably helped United to four Premier League trophies and a UEFA Champions League crown.
That same attitude helped Fletcher make a stirring return with the Red Devils earlier this season, but this is yet another unfortunate setback. Whether the surgery will be enough to relieve him of his chronic condition remains to be seen.
It will take more of that never-say-die mantra that Fletcher preaches to get through this rehabilitation process.