Aymeric Laporte will resume full training with the rest of the Manchester City squad in "one week or 10 days", Pep Guardiola has revealed.
Laporte suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage during City's 4-0 win over Brighton on August 31, and has been out of action ever since.
In his absence, the defending Premier League champions have fallen 14 points behind Liverpool in the title race, with Fernandinho forced to fill in at centre-back.
Guardiola has faced plenty of criticism for failing to bring in a replacement for Vincent Kompany during the summer transfer window, a decision which has ultimately left City short on depth in defence.
However, City could be ready to welcome a talismanic performer back into the fold sooner than expected, after Guardiola delivered a positive update on Laporte's fitness at a press conference on Tuesday.
When asked how his squad are shaping up ahead of a clash with Everton at Etihad Stadium on New Year's Day, Guardiola stated: "Laporte and Sane (are still injured) - the rest are happy.
"Laporte is now getting better and training alone, he’s already on the pitch. I don’t know (how long until he's back) but one week or 10 days then he can train with us."
Guardiola also confirmed that John Stones and David Silva will be available for selection for the first time since suffering respective knocks during a 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on December 7.
He said: "I like to have all the squad available - I don't like to see players injured. Yes, Stones and Silva are back."
City bounced back from a shock 3-2 loss against Wolves at Molineux at the back end of last week by recording a 2-0 home win over Sheffield United on Sunday.
Guardiola's men will be hoping for back-to-back victories when they play host to Everton, but the Merseyside outfit come into the clash high on confidence after a bright start to life under Carlo Ancelotti.
The Italian manager has overseen victories over Burnley and Newcastle during his first two games at the helm, helping the Toffees rise to 10th in the table.
Guardiola went on to describe Ancelotti as an "incredible" head coach, while expressing his belief that Everton will provide City with a "difficult test" as they open their 2020 account.
"Everton is Everton. One of the biggest historical teams in England with incredible quality of players," Guardiola added. "With a new manager of incredible quality and capacity of Carlo, he makes them work and has got good results in the last two games, so it is a difficult test."
Three days after their latest Premier League outing, City will turn their attention to a third-round tie against Port Vale in the FA Cup, before a Carabao Cup semi-final first-leg meeting with arch-rivals United on January 7.