Manchester City know that should they secure a win against Aston Villa on the final day of the Premier League season this weekend, then they will be crowned English top-flight champions for the fourth time in five seasons.
Standing in their way are Steven Gerrard's side, but Pep Guardiola and his Manchester City players have now been granted an extra reason to be confident, with the return of a significant defensive pairing to training on Thursday.
In the previous few games, Manchester City have been heavily restricted in that area of the pitch, and have been forced into using Fernandinho as the right-sided centre-back alongside Aymeric Laporte.
However, as per the reporting of Sky Sports who were present at Manchester City's training session on Thursday morning, England international defensive duo John Stones and Kyle Walker both trained with the rest of the team.
The return of both players now enables Pep Guardiola to have more flexibility when it comes to his team selection on Sunday afternoon, with Walker's return potentially allowing for Joao Cancelo to move over to left-back.
John Stones' comeback from injury could also mean the Englishman slots back in alongside Aymeric Laporte at the heart of Manchester City's defence, moving Fernandinho back onto the substitutes bench for what could be the Brazilian's final Premier League appearance.
Further details concerning the duo's fitness and availability for the weekend is expected to be provided by Pep Guardiola on Friday afternoon, when he faces the media in his pre-match press conference for the final time this campaign.