Diego Milito has confirmed he will miss Sunday's derby against AC Milan but insists he could return to action for Inter in January.
The Argentine striker has suffered a frustrating campaign, with a thigh strain forcing him to be sidelined for the previous nine league games.
Milito last appeared for the Nerazzurri as a late substitute in the 3-0 home defeat inflicted by title-chasing Roma in October, but has recently returned to training and is reportedly raring to go.
"I feel good, I'm almost at the end of my recovery phase,” he told Sport Mediaset.
Milito's only two goals this season came in the 7-0 thrashing of Sassuolo and the news of his return will be welcomed by coach Walter Mazzarri, who is believed to be seeking an additional striker regardless of the 34-year-old's progress.
Meanwhile, Milito admits that he is taking every precaution necessary to prevent any reoccurrence of the injury that has kept him out for nearly three months.
He continued: “I'm training with the team and little by little I'm reaching levels that will allow me to return to the field.
“I do not want to take any chances. The idea is then to look at the date of January as the date of my return."