Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne is confident he will return to training in two weeks following his second operation on his long-term groin problem.
Dunne has been sidelined since initially suffering the setback with the Republic of Ireland during their Euro 2012 campaign and has not played since.
But the 33-year-old centre-back, who is in the final year of his Villa contract, reckons he is closing in on a return.
"The last operation I had seems to have really worked so I'm hopeful that I'll be back soon," Dunne said.
"I've set a few targets but I keep missing them. It's frustrating when I can do all the running and the rehab but not the final bit.
"But I'm hoping - fingers crossed - that I can start training in a couple of weeks. I've got to see the doctor and from there, hopefully it will be the all clear."