Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has revealed midfielder Ben Watson is back in training earlier than expected.
The 27-year-old broke his leg in the game against Liverpool in November, and looked likely to miss the rest of the season.
But the Spanish manager has confirmed Watson has made a quicker return from his injury, and could feature in a fixture before the end of the campaign.
Martinez told reporters: "He is already on the grass, and that is something we didn't expect until probably the end of March.
"I will be very surprised if he doesn't get at least one or two games before the season finishes.
"That is very encouraging and it shows a lot from Ben - how he has been acting on a daily basis and how professional he has been in his recovery.
"It is a real good boost for everyone to see his smiling face around the training ground and he is looking forward to just being on the pitch, which is a refreshing attitude."
Wigan were beaten 3-0 at Anfield on the day Watson was injured, and face them again at the DW Stadium in their next match. Despite losing the midfielder for most of the season, Martinez can already see a positive outlook for him.
Martinez added: "It was sad to look back at what happened at Anfield.
"It was a very unfortunate incident that nine times out of 10 wouldn't bring a major fracture.
"It was a disappointing moment but now, as we play the return fixture, we see all the positive vibes from Ben that he is going to be hopefully fully fit before the end of the season."