Fiorentina striker Giuseppe Rossi is making good progress in his recovery from knee ligament damage, according to his agent, who has pencilled in a date for his return to action.
The Italy international did not require surgery on a knee injury he sustained during Fiorentina's 1-0 win over Livorno last month, although at least a three-month absence with conservative therapy was predicted.
He is currently undergoing physiotherapy in Manhattan, New York, and is not due back in Italy until next month, but agent Andrea Pastorello has not ruled out the 27-year-old returning for the Viola's clash with Roma on April 19.
"Technically it's possible," Pastorello told Firenzeviola.it. "But very often, theory and practice don't always agree. We're therefore remaining cautious so as not to give anybody any false hope.
"Together with Luke Bongiorno [Rossi's physical therapy director in Manhattan], we have forecast his return to Florence for March 20, which is 10 days earlier than first predicted. We're then looking at another month before he can train fully with the team."
That is the plan, although Pastorello admits it is impossible to know how the knee will respond to his return to training late next month.
"Working on the field is more unpredictable than physiotherapy work," he said.
He added that Rossi's inclusion on Fiorentina's squad list for the remainder of the Europa League was a psychological boost.
"I'd like to thank [coach Vincenzo] Montella for this gesture and signal to Rossi, which he appreciated a lot," Pastorello said. "At times like these, the psychological aspects are fundamental and anybody who works in football and sport will understand this.
"Indeed, one of the first things we had to work on was the mental aspect, but Giuseppe is such an extraordinary lad and, yet again, he showed amazing character and will to fight. I've been an agent for nearly 20 years and I've never known anybody with his personality."
Meanwhile, Rossi tweeted his support for Fiorentina's Coppa Italia tie with Udinese on Tuesday night, saying "games like these are the most beautiful! Come on lads!"
The Viola need to overcome a 2-1 defeat from the first leg to reach the final.