Andre Villas-Boas has put a timeframe on when Scott Parker will make a comeback for Tottenham, with the Portuguese tactician predicting a Christmas recovery for the midfielder.
Parker is yet to feature for Spurs this season after an Achilles operation in August, which left him with a long road to recovery and in a great deal of pain.
And while Villas-Boas had been unsure over when the England international would return to Tottenham's squad, he now believes that the end of December is a realistic target, if not sooner.
"It's difficult for him as he still feels pain and is still disturbed in his recovery," he told Sky Sports. "It prevents him from being on the pitch but he has been evolving inside, in the gym, with the medical department.
"It is still within the limits of what we expected. He is making good progress and there has been less pain.
"It will take two or three weeks - we could be looking at Christmas. Hopefully less."
Tottenham will be hoping their squad steers clear of injjuries in the coming months as they face a tough schedule both domestciallty and in the Europa League.
In the next week alone, they will play Chelsea, travel to Slovenia and then return to face Southampton away, and with League Cup games to compete in as well, Parker's return couldn't come any sooner.
Meanwhile, Lazio were fined $32,500 for their fans' racist chanting at the side's match-up with Tottenham at White Hart Lane by UEFA.
Jermain Defoe, Aaron Lennon and Andros Townsend were believed to be subjected to monkey chants from the supporters, and Lazio have three days to appeal the sanction.