Birmingham City manager Alex McLeish has said he will not be tempted into rushing back striker James McFadden as he recovers well from a cruciate ligament injury on his knee.
The Scottish international sustained the injury while in training in early September and he has yet to return to action. McLeish believes that his player is benefiting from being in prime physical condition.
But he knows the dangers of recalling the ex-Everton player ahead of schedule however encouraging the medical bulletins may be.
McLeish said: "The progress Faddy has made, you are thinking 'wow, he's going to be back quick, back before Christmas'.
"But you have to be careful and put the reins on a wee bit and let things heal properly. The actual rejoining of the cruciate actually has to take time to heal. What's really helped Faddy is the condition he came back in the summer. He's probably his leanest ever and fittest ever.
"I just had such a good feeling about James this season before he was struck down so cruelly with this injury. He's training well. He's kept himself in good shape and all that helps in the recovery of a player from injury.
"If he had gone off and indulged, having pints of shandy in the house every night and biscuits and things like that, it wouldn't have aided his recovery. You've got to credit the player for his discipline."