Chelsea manager Antonio Conte could give Blues outcast Baba Rahman the chance to revive his career at Stamford Bridge in the second half of the season.
Rahman signed for Chelsea during the summer of 2015 for £21m ($27.1m), but made just 11 appearances for the club during his debut season but has yet to feature once under Conte, who judged the full-back to be "too attacking", according to the player himself.
Last season he joined Schalke on a season-long loan but the Ghana international suffered a serious knee injury during January's Africa Cup of Nations which ruled him out for the remainder of the 2016-17 season.
That injury scuppered Schalke's plans to strike another deal for the left-back last summer with Rahman remaining in west London to complete his recovery.
Reports in Italy have claimed Fiorentina are interested in signing Rahman during the January transfer window but the 23-year-old could still be given the chance to prove himself at Stamford Bridge.
When asked if the former Augsburg youngster will leave on loan in the New Year, Conte told a press conference: "It's a good question. This player is coming from a bad, bad injury. He's struggling a bit to recover the best form. To be honest, I don't know what's happening with Baba. For sure, from the human aspect, I'd like to give him an opportunity to come back stronger like before.
"I think that now he has to face recovery. He's showing great patience as he's struggling a lot. I don't know what's happening with Baba. If I can help him, I'm ready to help him. There's the player and the human aspect. It's good for him to stay here and take the right time to recover. We are ready."