Flamengo has received a big boost with the news that captain Ronaldinho will not require surgery on his knee and could be back for Sunday's crunch tie against Vasco da Gama.
The Brazil international playmaker sat out of the side's penalty shoot-out victory over Fluminense in the semifinal of the Carioca championship.
"He has a bone edema but there is no indication that he will need surgey. The player [Ronaldinho] is currently receiving treatment and we expect that he might be fit to play next Sunday [against Vasco da Gama]," the club's doctor Jose Luiz Runco told the Flamengo's offical website.
The player himself is optimistic of a swift return and told reporters, "I'm better. Little by little I'm getting better."
Flamengo is currently in Ceara for their Copo do Brasil second-round fixture against lowly Horizonte on Wednesday, although Ronaldinho did not travel with the club.
According to reports in the local media, Argentinian midfielder Dario Bottinelli will play in Ronaldinho's position. He impressed when he entered the game off the bench against Fluminense.
Ronaldinho has made 15 appearances so far for the Brazilian giants and has scored five goals.