The England striker was part of the Red Devils side that won at Swansea on Saturday but he was absent when the United squad were put through their paces at Carrington.
However, manager Sir Alex Ferguson feels his star striker will recover for a game United need to win to maintain hopes of topping Group C.
It is a complicated qualification picture, with United and Benfica level at the top on eight points, three ahead of Basle, with Otelul Galati propping up the standings.
United could win on Tuesday and still find themselves requiring a result in Switzerland next month, or draw and go through.
Basle's result against currently pointless Otelul Galati holds the key, although Ferguson remains totally focused on sealing top spot, therefore probably avoiding Barcelona, AC Milan and Real Madrid in the knockout phase.
"You hope to finish top,'' he said.
"One issue is the teams you might draw if you finish second, although with the quality of the teams, it doesn't make a great difference.
"The main advantage is knowing the second leg would be at Old Trafford."
Jonny Evans is also expected to be available after injury but skipper Nemanja Vidic is missing as he serves the final game of a two-match ban while Michael Owen and Tom Cleverley are long-term absentees.
Like United, Benfica have won two and drawn two of their four Group C games so far.
Both of the Portuguese side's victories have come on their travels and that suggests the two-time European champions could pose United a serious threat at Old Trafford, where another win would take Benfica through as group winners.
However, Benfica coach Jorge Jesus knows his side face a tough task against a Red Devils side who have played in three finals in the last four years.
"They are different," Jesus said.
"That is the reason why they have won so much.
"Manchester United have different ideas and a different history. They show that on the pitch.
"They are much stronger technically this season.
"They keep the ball quite well and in almost every match they have 60% possession compared with the other team."
Benfica, who go into the match on the back of a 1-0 cup win over Naval Maio on Friday, with be without Javier Saviola and Enzo Perez but midfielders Nemanja Matic and Javi Garcia, who had been struggling with leg injuries recently, were both included in the travelling squad.