Manchester City hope Martin Petrov can postpone surgery on his knee injury until the end of the season.
The Bulgaria winger was believed to be facing at least three months on the sidelines with knee ligament damage picked up on international duty at the beginning of October.
Mark Hughes doesn't know whether a period of rest will result in Petrov's surgery being postponed, but the City chief is keeping his fingers crossed.
"Our initial thoughts were that he is going to be out for quite some time and that could still be the case," he told the club's official website.
"He went to see the specialist in Spain that looked after him when he did his ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) and the report on that is that it is intact, so there's no problem there.
"He does have a problem with his meniscus but the view is that maybe for the next couple of weeks we will try to build up the strength around the injury.
"If, after that, there is no marked improvement then we will have to do something about it and he will be out for a significant amount of time.
"For the next two weeks we are hoping that the strengthening around the injury may take the pressure off it and he may able to play, with getting it done at the end of the season a possibility.
"It's a long shot, but maybe worth taking for the sake of a couple of weeks."
Meanwhile, Hughes also confirmed that Micah Richards is a doubt for Sunday's clash with Stoke City with the ankle injury picked up in last Monday's 2-2 draw with Newcastle United.