Everton defender Phil Jagielka is set to return to action for the reserves against Bolton on Tuesday.
The Toffees centre-back has not played since damaging cruciate ligaments in his left knee during a game against Manchester City last April, but will make his long-awaited comeback for the second string.
Jagielka was in excellent form for Everton before his injury last term, having moved to Goodison Park from Sheffield United in 2007.
Having played for England last February in a friendly match against Spain, the injury was a setback on an improving career.
Everton have been boosted by a number of returning players in recent weeks, and their form has benefited after a poor start to the season.
And youngster Jack Rodwell believes the only way is up for the Toffees. "Jagielka hasn't played and he was our best player last season," he told the Liverpool Echo.
"The future really is bright for Everton at the moment."
Rodwell was on the scoresheet in Everton's impressive 3-1 win over Premier League champions Manchester United on Saturday.
The 18-year-old hot prospect finished off a driving run with an emphatic finish to seal the victory, and he himself hopes to take advantage of an injury to Marouane Fellaini and seize his chance in the first team.
"Sometimes you get your chances from other people's injuries, which is unfortunate for them but you've got to take that chance," he added.
"I've been working hard in training, keeping my head down and hopefully I'll get a run in the back end of the season.
"I've been out for six weeks and it was really frustrating. It's hard to get back in the team now but I'm focused and that's what I intend to do.
"Just to get on against United was great but to score and beat them was the icing on the cake.
"We've beaten Manchester City, Chelsea and now Manchester United.
"We've had some great results at home and the confidence is brilliant.
"We need to beat the other sides like Aston Villa and Bolton to push for
Europe. Who knows where we can finish?"