Derby County midfielder George Thorne is aiming to return from injury early into the new year.
Thorne joined the Championship club in July but the 21-year-old suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury just days after signing for the Rams.
"I'm feeling positive and hitting the targets I want to reach," said Thorne.
"I'd like to think I will be back before the end of the season and I will aim for early new year but that depends on how the next few months progress."
Chatham-born Thorne was out for eight months in 2013 with a similar knee problem, but says that experience is helping him in his recovery.
"It has certainly helped me in terms of rehabilitation, my previous injuries put me in good stead for that," Thorne told BBC Radio Derby.
"I know my targets, I know the exercises, I know the feelings and warnings so I am ready for the remainder of my rehabilitation.
Former West Bromwich Albion player Thorne was Derby's main summer signing after he enjoyed a successful loan spell at the iPro Stadium last season.