Graham Potter has issued a positive triple injury update on Chelsea trio Reece James, Wesley Fofana and Carney Chukwuemeka.
Chelsea are nearing a return to Premier League action with their home clash against AFC Bournemouth around two weeks away on December 27.
Potter and co have been in Abu Dhabi for a training camp which saw their injured players also make the trip with them to continue their rehabilitation programmes.
Fofana (knee) and James (knee) were injured against AC Milan – Fofana in the home clash and James away from home – but are making positive steps in their recovery as they eye returns at the end of the month.
Carney Chukwuemeka has also been out and was absent too for the 1-0 friendly defeat to Aston Villa on Sunday in the Middle East.
But following Chelsea’s return to England, the trio are getting ever closer to being available again.
Potter confirmed the latest injury news on the trio, saying: “Reece has moved forward, Wesley and Carney are moving forward, so that’s positive.
The Chelsea head coach is also confident Ruben Loftus-Cheek (calf) and Ben Chilwell (hamstring) could soon follow.
He added: “Then hopefully Ruben, Ben Chilwell can take a step forward in their rehab next week. We’re optimistic about that.”
Chelsea will play one more friendly before they host Bournemouth, Potter confirmed, concluding: “We’ve got a full week training when we get back, obviously recover from the flight. Then we’ve got a friendly the following week so that’ll be good.”