Algeria star Hassan Yebda could win his race to be fit in time to take on England in the World Cup finals.
Yebda, who spent the season on loan at Portsmouth, has been struggling with a thigh injury that ruled him out of their FA Cup final defeat to Chelsea.
The Benfica midfielder reckons he is on course for a return, though, and could make a comeback in Friday's friendly against Republic of Ireland.
Algeria take on Giovanni Trapattoni's side at Croke Park as part of their preparations for Group C, which get under way on 13th June against Slovenia.
Yebda's team then take on England on 18th June in Cape Town and the 26-year-old is hoping to be fit in time for the start of the tournament.
But the former Auxerre man said in The Sun that he would not rush his comeback.
"I am in doing stretching sessions, which are usually the last thing to do before being back in with the squad," said Yebda.
"I am feeling better and better but I don't want to take silly risks. At the moment I am not sure about the match against Ireland, but we will see."