Barcelona star Sergi Roberto is confident he will be fully fit to feature when the La Liga leaders visit Real Madrid on 23 December after confirming that the recovery from his hamstring injury is "going well".
The versatile midfielder has been out of action since being forced off during the goalless Champions League draw at Olympiakos on 31 October.
A day later Barcelona ruled him out for around five weeks with scans revealing that the 25-year-old suffered a "hamstring strain in his right leg".
The Spaniard will also be unavailable for the weekend's crucial visit to second-placed Valencia but he shouldn't have any problem to be 100% fit to face Real in the first El Clasico of La Liga within one month.
"[The recovery] is going well but I will not arrive in time to play against Juventus or Valencia," Sergi Roberto said as quoted by Sport after receiving the Catalan Footballer of the Year award.
Pressed whether he would be ready for the highly-awaited trip to Madrid, the midfielder confirmed: "Yes, I will certainly be ready for that one."
Manager Ernesto Valverde will be hoping the Spaniard is available in the not too distant future. If his original five-week absence proves to be correct, Roberto could even return for the visit to Villarreal on 10 December.
The Spaniard will then have another La Liga clash with Deportivo la Coruna on 17 December to build up his match fitness before El Clasico.
Roberto made 16 appearances before the injury and, if he is 100% fit, he could feature in Valverde's starting line-up against Real either at right-back ahead of Nelson Semedo or in midfield.
One way or another Roberto's return will be a boost to Valverde with the Barcelona manager currently having five more players on the sidelines in the form of Javier Mascherano, Andre Gomes, Arda Turan, Ousmane Dembele and Rafinha Alcantara.
Mascherano and Gomes are also expected to be ready for the trip to Madrid next month and even sooner while on Monday Barcelona provided an encouraging update on their website regarding Dembele, releasing footage of the France starlet undertaking a series of high intensity sprints at the club's training ground.
The club record signing was initially ruled out until next year after suffering a serious muscle injury which required surgery during Barcelona's 2-1 victory over Getafe on 16 September.
However, earlier this month Dr Orava, the specialist who underwent the surgery, suggested that the France starlet could return slightly ahead of schedule and in time to play some minutes against Real.