Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill may not be without defender Wes Brown for as long as previously feared.
Defender Brown has suffered a torrid time with injuries since O'Neill took over as manager from Steve Bruce.
The former Manchester United defender has not featured for the first team in a competitive match since January.
He also limped out of the frinedly match with FC Groningen during Sunderland's tour of South Korea for the Peace Cup.
32-year-old Brown returned from the tour on crutches but O'Neill has revealed that the injury is not as bad as first feared.