Werder Bremen's Peru striker Claudio Pizarro is expected to be playing again by the weekend as his knee injury is not as bad as first feared, it was revealed on Wednesday.
The 33-year-old damaged his knee in the 5-0 drubbing by Borussia Moenchengladbach in the Bundesliga last Saturday, but a scan has revealed he has only strained the medial ligament and could face VfB Stuttgart this weekend.
It had been thought the knee injury was a ligament tear, meaning weeks or even months out, and he had told local newspaper Syke that he would be injured for up to four weeks, before the Bremen doctor brought better news.
"Claudio has problems with his knee and couldn't train, but he has worked on rehab instead and will hopefully be able to play by the end of the week," said Bremen coach Thomas Schaaf, with his side fifth in the table.
News of an anticipated early return is good for Schaaf as Pizarro has scored 11 league goals this season with Bremen set to face Stuttgart on Sunday and then hosting league leaders Bayern Munich on Saturday December 3.