Chelsea midfielder Michael Ballack is back in training and could be ready for a first-team return later this month.
The 31-year-old has not played a match since April and has been forced to undergo two operations on his ankle.
But Blues boss Avram Grant is looking forward to the Germany international's imminent return to action.
He said: "On Monday he did his first training on the pitch with the reserve team.
"He did it very well and he has progressed very well in the last few weeks.
"We will see what happens in the next two or three weeks but he is going in the right way and of course I hope he will be available for us as soon as possible."
Ballack scored seven goals in 46 appearances for Chelsea last season following his free transfer switch from Bayern Munich.