Jack Wilshere will be back playing within four weeks, according to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.
The English midfielder suffered a hairline fracture on his left leg back in August - the latest injury in an alarmingly long list for a 23-year-old - with rumours suggesting that his return had been recently pushed back by a further setback.
However, Wenger was quick to reject such speculation, arguing instead that the midfielder's continued absence was precautionary, ahead of the business end of the domestic season and this summer's European Championship.
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Speaking ahead of Tuesday night's game against Southampton, the Frenchman revealed: "He is looking good. I had a short chat with Roy Hodgson about him and reassured him that he is progressing well. I'm cautious but I will say (he will be back in) four weeks."
Since making his international debut in the aftermath of the disastrous 2010 World Cup campaign, Wilshere has often been heralded as one of England's greatest talents.
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The 23-year-old is a firm favourite with Hodgson, due in part to his commanding displays from the base of England's midfield - Wilshere claimed six man-of-the-match awards out of a possible seven in England's recent qualification campaign. however, even if he can regain his full fitness, Wilshere will face stiff competition to start in England's midfield this summer.
However, even if he can regain his full fitness, Wilshere will face an uphill struggle to start in England's midfield this summer.
Though additional games will be added, at the moment England's only scheduled friendlies between now and the start of the European Championship, will be on March 26 and March 29 against Germany and Holland, with Wilshere unlikely to assume a central role so soon after his return.
Meanwhile, 19-year-old Dele Alli has been the breakthrough player of the season at Tottenham, whilst Jordan Henderson, Michael Carrick, Ross Barkley and potentially even Eric Dier, will all have designs on one of the midfield spots.
For Arsenal, Wilshere arguably faces an even steeper struggle. Francis Coquelin is indispensable in providing balance to the Gunners' play whilst Aaron Ramsey and Santi Cazorla will expect to start in the midfield two.
Wenger's side are currently chasing their first Premier League title in 12 years, with Tuesday's game an important opportunity to rewrite the Boxing Day calamity when Southampton won 4-0.
Would Jack Wilshere be part of your England XI for this summer's European Championship? Give us your opinion in the comment box below!