Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini expects Mario Balotelli to return to the squad at the end of next month.
Balotelli is sidelined with a knee injury and the striker said he would be out for eight weeks.
However Mancini responded: "He is in Italy and his knee is okay. I think he may be ready at the end of October, in four to five weeks."
Micah Richards could come into contention for the Europa League match against Juventus on Thursday after sitting out the victory over Chelsea with a hamstring injury.
Shaun Wright-Phillips is doubtful with a knee problem while Wayne Bridge and Aleksandar Kolarov remain absent.
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