West Ham United defender Winston Reid is closing in on a return to full fitness, according to Claret and Hugh.
The club source revealed on their website that the New Zealander is making encouraging progress and could return within two to three weeks after being sidelined with a knee injury.
Claret and Hugh report that Reid will first be involved with the under-23s, and if all goes to plan, the 31-year-old could feature in the Leasing.com Trophy clash against Sunderland at the end of September.
Reid featured in pre-season for the Hammers but has failed to prove his fitness for the beginning of the Premier League season under Manuel Pellegrini.
Whether he returns to full fitness within three weeks or not, Reid surely has little chance of featuring in the Premier League this season. The most the 31-year-old can hope for at the London Stadium is a mentoring role and possible exposure in cup competitions. When featuring in pre-season, Reid did not look solid whatsoever and was part of a couple of games in which the Hammers shipped goals at ease. Reid has suffered from years of injury problems and missed 484 days of action with his knee injury before briefly returning in pre-season [Transfermarkt]. The spell led to the New Zealander missing 53 games in total and could lead to the defender never making a senior appearance under Pellegrini again. With Issa Diop, Angelo Ogbonna, and Fabian Balbuena ahead of him in the pecking order, Reid doesn’t have a future of consistent football at the London Stadium. Ogbonna began the season as the third choice but has started the past three top-flight fixtures – averaging an impressive 2.7 tackles and six clearances according to WhoScored, something Reid must replicate if ever given the opportunity. Pellegrini should be happy with his options though, and the 31-year-old will struggle to return.