Aston Villa midfielder Stiliyan Petrov looks like winning his battle to be fit for the hectic festive programme after resuming training.
The Bulgarian international has missed Villa's last two games with Portsmouth and Sunderland after suffering a hamstring injury during the first half against Arsenal.
But he is back training with his team-mates at Bodymoor Heath and could come into contention for Saturday's home clash with Manchester City.
Petrov said: "I am definitely on the mend and can't wait to get back into action. Hopefully I'll be back in the frame for the Manchester City game. I did my first training session on Monday and it felt all right and there was no reaction. It was the first chance I've had to test it out.
"We will see where we are at the end of the week when I've had a full week's training. I think if I can get a full week's training, I will be fit and then we will see what the manager wants to do."
Petrov had been showing signs of finally being close to his best form before the injury. He said: "It was frustrating to get the injury when I did because I felt that I had been doing okay.
"The manager brought me here to show what I can do. I know what I am capable of. I've been working hard and I'm really happy I was showing what I can do.
"There is more to come, because I know what my limits are, and I will try to progress as much as I can.
"But injuries are part of football and there is nothing you can do about injuries."