United States attacker Aron Johannsson is edging closer to his comeback nearly 11 months after last featuring for his club, Werder Bremen.
Johannsson's first season in the Bundesliga was cut short in September 2015 when a hip injury ended his promising start.
He had played only six games, scoring two goals before the injury, and in October of 2015, Johannsson underwent surgery and later spent parts of his rehab in his native Iceland.
Earlier this summer, Bremen's sporting director Frank Baumann confirmed that the club were not expecting him for the preseason and would not rush his comeback.
Johannsson played 30 minutes in Bremen's 2-0 win against fourth-tier club SV Meppen last week, and a few days later went 45 minutes in a friendly against Ingolstadt.
Speaking to Radio Bremen last week, Johannsson already said "it's great to be back on the pitch," and acknowledged he needs "to get game to get in the right form to play 90 minutes."
"It's not in my nature to give up," he said. "It was a little setback, but I am back now and hopefully I can stay injury-free for the season."
Johannsson could now make a swift return to Bremen's competitive squad when they take on third-division side Lotte in the German Cup on Sunday. He is one of several options to replace the injured attacker Claudio Pizarro.
Last weekend, the 37-year-old former Bayern striker was ruled out with a muscle injury, and Bremen said he will miss up to 10 days.
"Aron is a good alternative," Bremen coach Viktor Skripnik told Kreiszeitung Syke. "He puts a lot of pressure on the other players."