Barcelona centre-back Samuel Umtiti is expected to return to action for the La Liga encounter with Deportivo La Coruna on 15 October, according to Sport. The news is an additional boost for manager Luis Enrique, after recent reports also claimed Lionel Messi could play some minutes against the Galicians in order to be 100% ready for the Champions League game with Manchester City.
Umtiti has enjoyed an impressive start to life at Barcelona following his arrival from Lyon. The France international has pulled ahead of Javier Mascherano as Luis Enrique's first choice to partner Gerard Pique at the heart of defence.
However, his promising adaptation to Spanish football was derailed after suffering an internal ligament strain to his left knee in preparation for the game with Atletico Madrid. He was ruled out of the 1-1 draw with Diego Simeone's side but no date was set for his recovery.
"FC Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti suffered an internal ligament strain on his left knee during Tuesday morning's training session," the club said at the time. "Therefore, the Frenchman will miss Wednesday's match against Atletico Madrid at the Nou Camp. The progression of his injury will determine exactly how long he will be out for."
The 22-year-old has missed three additional games since, with Barcelona beating Sporting Gijon and Borussia Monchengladbach before a weekend defeat to Celta Vigo.
Barcelona are yet to provide any update on his recovery but Sport claims Umtiti has made good progress in recent days and will be available after the international break.
The report suggest the Frenchman will be fully fit to start against Deportivo on 15 October.
The news would be a much-needed boost for Luis Enrique as Pique and Mascherano will arrive to the game fatigued following international ties. Should Umtiti be ready, the gaffer will be able to rotate his squad against Deportivo prior to the Manchester City game four days later.
Reports earlier this week claimed Messi will also play a part against Pep Guardiola's side.
Meanwhile, Luis Enrique also has doubts over Ivan Rakitic after the midfielder pulled out of the Croatia squad with an Achilles tendon injury that is expected to keep him on the sidelines for around 10 days.