Melbourne Victory captain Carl Valeri is in line to make his first appearance in over four months after recovering from inflammation affecting his brain.
Valeri has been included in the Victory team to travel to New Zealand for their A-League fixture against Wellington Phoenix on Saturday.
The 31-year-old was initially ruled out for the rest of the 2015-16 season but the club confirmed he will make his return earlier than expected.
Valeri revealed the mystery condition left him unable to walk at times, but the former Socceroo is happy to have the chance to be back on the park.
“A few months ago, we didn’t know what was going to happen. When [the condition] was at its worst, I struggled to walk,” he said on Wednesday.
“To be back in and among the boys, it’s a great feeling and I realised how much I missed [playing] and how much it puts me in a positive mood off the park.
“It’s a great bunch of guys and I thank them so much for their support, they’ve been fantastic through the whole process.”
— Melbourne Victory (@gomvfc) March 30, 2016
Valeri has not played for Victory since making a 20-minute cameo in the club’s 2-1 win over Adelaide United in November.
After that game, the defending champions went on a run of five games without a win, including four-consecutive defeats, but have since recovered to all but seal their spot in the finals series.