United States Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III says Tiger Woods is confident of qualifying for the 2016 team.
Woods ruled himself out of contention for last year's match at Gleneagles, taking a break from golf due to injury.
The 39-year-old, now ranked 96, has started only two events this year and is on another break to regain form.
"He's expecting to make the team," Love told BBC Radio. "He and I keep in touch a lot more than we have. He still has a good attitude and is working hard."
Former world number one Woods, who won the last of his 14 majors in 2008, made his Ryder Cup debut in 1997 and has made a total of seven appearances in the event.
After recovering from surgery on a pinched nerve which forced him to miss last year's Masters and US Open, he failed to make the cut in his first tournament of the season, the Waste Management Phoenix Open, when he recorded an 11-over-par 82, the worst round of his professional career.
The following week at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines he was two over par when he withdrew after 11 holes of the opening round because of further back problems.
Days later he announced another indefinite break saying his game was "unacceptable for tournament play" but said this month he is "hopeful" of playing in the first major of the year, the Masters at Augusta from 9-12 April.
In an interview with BBC Radio 5 live, Love III added: "I spoke to a few people who tell me he's working very hard and is eager to get back. I suppose he has a plan for The Masters - we're hoping to see him back soon.
"Right now, it's the Ryder Cup we're talking about - we have guys trying to make the Presidents Cup team [against the International team in October] and he is anxious about getting back to playing so he can get some points for that, then he can think about Ryder Cup.
"But I wouldn't count him out just yet."
Europe have won the last three Ryder Cups and defend the trophy against the USA at Hazeltine, Minnesota, from 30 September-2 October next year.