Kevin De Bruyne will be ready to return to training for Manchester City in a few days, according to manager Pep Guardiola.
The Belgian playmaker suffered a knee ligament injury in training in August but is now close to being able to rejoin his team-mates.
“He’s making the last steps,” Guardiola said at his Friday press conference.
“He’ll start training in the next days I think. Everything is going well.”
Guardiola was also impressed by how City’s highly-rated English midfielder Phil Foden fared in the Carabao Cup against Oxford.
Asked how far he was from a Premier League start, the Spaniard said: “It’s not important if he starts or not. He is part of the group, the squad. It’s about my decisions. He is ready to play, of course.
“He can start in any competition, in any games. He is ready. After that, he has to compete with team-mates and sometimes it is not possible. But he is ready.”
Is he close to signing a new contract?
“I don’t know. I didn’t speak about that. I think Phil likes to be here, the club and manager have no doubts about that. Hopefully it is going to happen sooner or later but I’m never involved in these kinds of situations.”
Guardiola confirmed defender Benjamin Mendy was late arriving for a treatment session on Sunday and had been spoken to about it.
“He should be here, he knows it,” the City boss said.