Leicester City midfielder Wilfred Ndidi could return as early as next week after making a speedy recovery from a groin injury.
Brendan Rodgers feared the Nigerian could miss up to three months of action after the enforcer suffered the injury in the Foxes 4-2 victory over Burnley at the end of September.
The midfielder underwent surgery and had been ruled out until Christmas following Rodgers’ initial diagnosis, but the Leicester Mercury now report he’s in contention for Leicester’s penultimate Europa League group stage encounter against Zorya Luhansk next Thursday.
Despite their injury woes to start the campaign, Rodgers’ side have begun the season brightly and currently sit fourth in the Premier League table – just two points off top – after nine games.
However, as the Leicester boss said ahead of his side’s clash with Braga on Thursday evening, it’s all positive news on the injury front with Ndidi, Timothy Castagne and Caglar Soyuncu all stepping up their respective recoveries.
“Timothy hasn’t travelled, so we’re just monitoring him over the course of this week to see where he’s at before the game on Monday [against Fulham],” said Rodgers.
“Wilf is progressing really well, so we’ll see the possibility of him when we play in Ukraine, so that’ll be great news.
“Cags [Soyuncu], he’s a bit further down the line, but we’ll see where he’s at in the next few weeks. They’re progressing really well, but none of them are obviously here to play.”
Ricardo Pereira, meanwhile, returned to action for the first time since rupturing his cruciate ligament in March as he ran out for the Foxes’ Under-23 side on Monday.
The Portuguese international’s lengthy lay-off means he’s still a few weeks away from a full return to the first team, with Rodgers adding: “He played his first competitive football for the Under-23s on Monday, which was really good.
“We hope over these next two to three weeks he can build up his match fitness and then hopefully very soon be playing in the first team. We’re so happy he’s come back very strong. It’ll be great to have him back.”