Schalke defender Coke could return to action in 2016 after the club announced that he will not face surgery on a knee ligament injury.
The 29-year-old, who joined from Europa League holders Sevilla in a €5million deal, sustained damage to his right cruciate ligament during his debut for the club in the pre-season friendly win over Bologna last Thursday.
Sporting director Christian Heidel said this week that Coke’s knee was “badly damaged” and that he could be sidelined until at least February of next year.
However, following further medical tests, the club have stated that the full-back will not need an operation and could be available two months earlier than predicted as a result.
“All those consulted agreed that it involves an isolated injury to the posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, and would not present any extreme instability in the joint,” Schake said in a statement.
“In this case, conservative treatment of the knee would be acceptable, meaning that the player will rejoin team training two months earlier than if he had to have an operation. Coke will now have to wear a special brace for the time being.”