Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery is hopeful of returning to action as early as before the winter break, despite suffering knee ligament damage.
The Frenchman tore the lateral collateral ligaments in his left knee against Hertha Berlin on October 2nd, and there were fears that he could have been out for a period of around three months.
But according to the player, things aren't as bad as they first seemed, and the 24-year-old is eyeing a return before the turn of the New Year.
Speaking after Bayern's victory over Freiburg, as reported by BILD, he said: "I just have to wait. I will be fit for the [winter break] preseason 100 per cent, I have to be with the team in Qatar. Maybe I can already play again before the winter break."
That winter break rolls around on December 13th and lasts until January 16th, and Ribery will be aiming to play a part against Stuttgart before the month-long hiatus. Action then resumes for the Bavarians against Bayer Leverkusen for which Ribery should then be fully fit for.
Bayern have set about hunting down Borussia Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga with their 5-0 win over Freiburg in Jupp Heynckes' first match as interim manager.
Dortmund's lead is down to just two points now after RB Leipzig handed them their first league defeat of the season.