Newcastle winger Sylvain Marveaux could return to give fresh impetus to their challenge for a European place.
The 25-year-old has undergone operations on his hip and groin after he broke down on his full Premier League debut against Everton in November.
The Magpies are currently sixth in the Premier League and European qualification would be a fitting reward for an encouraging season.
Marveaux, who signed from Rennes last summer, could return to training next month but he is refusing to rush his comeback.
"I'm not thinking of playing again yet - I want to do it step by step," he told The Gazette.
"I'm working to train again. I don't know if I will play, because I haven't trained for two months now, but if I can help, I will.
"It's getting better now. The worst - surgery and everything - is behind me, and I just want to get on the pitch."