Arsene Wenger has warned not to expect "miracles" from Robin van Persie should the Arsenal forward return to action before the end of the season.
The Holland striker has been on the sidelines since suffering a serious ankle injury while away on international duty in November. Van Persie, who had scored eight goals in 15 appearances before his setback, has made a good recovery, and has now returned to the Gunners' London Colney training complex to complete his rehabilitation.
However, the Gunners boss declared: "Do not expect miracles when a guy has been out for such a long time. We are, though, happy to have him back and he is physically, fitness-wise, in good shape."
Wenger added: "We have just to get him back to full team fitness - that will take two to three weeks maximum.
"After that you have to get a few games to get back to your best. It is very difficult to predict.
"Physically it looks all good, but after that when he plays in games you have to see how his ankle responds."
Van Persie even went to Serbia for radical treatment using massage with a horse placenta to try to help the healing process when he discovered the true extent of his injury.
Wenger reflected: "When you are hit by injury, the first three weeks are very difficult.
"I believe that is behind him now, once you start to practice again.
"The most important thing at that age is to be tired at night - when you can train, you can deal better with the frustration. When you lie at home at the start of your injury and cannot even do anything, it is very frustrating. I believe the hardest time is behind him."
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms