Jack Redshaw has told Morecambe fans not to expect an instant return to last season's scoring form after his return from a hip injury.
The 22-year-old netted 16 times for the Shrimps last term, a tally which earned him the League Two Player of the Year accolade at Monday night's Northwest Football Awards.
A hip operation during the summer was set to keep Redshaw out until Christmas but he came on as a late substitute in the 1-0 win over Burton last weekend, a short cameo which delighted the Morecambe faithful.
Yet the striker has urged caution, stating his current fitness is at pre-season level.
Asked when he thought he may be able to rekindle last season's form, he said: "It's hard to say. I've only done two weeks of full training so it's like another pre-season for me.
"I'm starting all over again and I'm trying to get my fitness, my sharpness back. It will probably be around Christmas time when I'm fully fit, fully sharp and hopefully starting games."
Shrimps boss Jim Bentley admitted it was something of a gamble introducing Redshaw last Saturday and the former Rochdale striker himself acknowledges even a five-minute outing tested his fitness.
"It feels great to be back, it's been a frustrating start to the season," he added.
"I played the last five minutes last Saturday and felt like I was towing a caravan. It just feels great to be back with the lads and back in full-time training.
"When I saw the specialist he said it would be roughly four to five months so I've done just over four months now. I'm three to four weeks ahead of schedule so I'm happy with that."