Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini says Carlos Tevez can return to the team if he apologises for the actions that led the club to suspend him.
The striker, 27, has not been selected since Mancini accused him of refusing to play against Bayern Munich in September, which Tevez denies.
But in an interview with Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, Mancini said: "Everything depends on Carlos.
"If he apologises to the squad and to me then everything will be as before."
Mancini, whose side take on Villarreal in Spain on Wednesday night, added: "If he doesn't, then Tevez has a value that everyone knows and something will happen in January."
After the Bayern game, Mancini said that Tevez was "finished" at City, with the Argentina striker being suspended while the club carried out an internal investigation.
In October, the club found him guilty of five breaches of contract, including a breach of "an obligation to participate in any matches in which the player is selected to play for the club when directed by a club official".
City fined the striker four weeks' wages, but were forced to reduce the fine to two weeks' pay by the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA).
Tevez is expected to appeal against the sanction and is considering suing Mancini for defamation of character.
"He is totally unprepared and being badly advised," said Mancini. "I don't want it to be like this and I would be the first to forgive him."