Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane is hoping to recover from his knee injury by July.
The 20-year-old, who became a mainstay in the starting line-up at the Bernabeu under ex-manager Jose Mourinho, suffered a knee injury against Espanyol on May 11 and was forced to undergo surgery.
The France international is now recovering at former club Lens and is looking to be fit in time to rejoin the Real squad next month.
“The objective is to be ready for the games at the start of pre-season between July 10 and 15,” Varane told Lens’ official website.
“I played nearly the whole of last season and I hope to be able to join up with the group as normal. An injury is never welcome, but it is part of a footballer’s life.
“I did not do anything dramatic with the knee, but the movement was enough to do myself damage.
“They operated on me very quickly in Beziers. It went very well for me. I took advantage of the season being over to continue my recovery in Lens which also allowed me to be close to my family. They also have very good infrastructure here. I am doing general work
to strengthen the muscles, and specific work in the legs.”
Varane spent just one season in the Lens’ senior set-up before moving to Madrid in July 2011, but the centre-back stressed that he still has great affection for the Ligue 2 club.
“This club will always have a special place for me,” Varane added.
“The simple fact of having returned inside its walls makes me happy. I am very devoted to this club, and always follow its results.”