Manchester City could have Robinho in their squad for the Carling Cup tie against Scunthorpe.
The Brazilian record signing has been missing for City since suffering a stress fracture to his ankle against Portsmouth in August.
But the former Real Madrid star could make his long awaited return to action in next Wednesday's fourth round fixture at Eastlands.
Boss Mark Hughes could hand the talented forward a place on the bench, but the City manager insists he will not rush the 25-year-old back into the fray too soon.
"He loves playing football of course, but it's part of being a professional sometimes that you have to work at getting back to the level required," Hughes said.
"You have to have a different mind set to get the work done, you're coming in when the other players are on a day off, and it can be hard getting back over a longer period than a few days.
"There is a possibility that Robbi will be on the bench for Scunthorpe, but it might be a bit soon and I don't like to throw players in before they've had games in training or in the reserves."