Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says star player Luis Suarez will slot back into the team seamlessly.
Suarez has one match of his biting ban to go, and will watch Liverpool’s Premier League game against Southampton impatiently on Saturday.
He will then be available for Liverpool’s Capital One Cup showdown with rivals Manchester United next week.
It is a typically dramatic fixture for Suarez to make his highly anticipated return in, considering his fraught history with the Red Devils, and Patrice Evra in particular.
Rodgers has refused to divulge if Suarez will in fact start against United, but if he does, the manager is confident that the Uruguayan forward will “hit the ground running.”
"We have been organising some games behind closed doors, both in terms of in-house 11-a-side matches and bringing teams in," Rodgers said of Liverpool’s attempts to keep Suarez sharp during his 10-match ban.
"In between that he has had international games as well to keep him ticking along. He has been doing a lot of individual work specific to him on top of all that and replicating his high-intensity speed runs that he would do in a game.
"It is not the same as playing in a match but say he did 1,000 high-intensity runs in a game, he has been replicating that in training so that he is at a level where we hope he will hit the ground running. There are always other things in a game – the crowd and the anxiety that you cannot replicate in training – but what you can at least do is get him to a level of fitness so that his numbers are replicated and that keeps him at a high level."
Suarez is likely to return to the line-up as a nominal right-sided forward, with Daniel Sturridge left to carry on his fine goalscoring form as a central striker. And Rodgers says last season’s top scorer has been primed to play wherever he is needed.
"The idea is that hopefully when he steps back in it will be seamless. Of course there will be a transitional period for him but I am really looking forward to having him back. He is working his socks off. At the end of sessions, he is having extra work tagged on relative to him and his position. He is flushing himself out to the maximum to be as fit as he possibly can. I am looking forward to it."
And Suarez will be needed, after the Reds were hit with the devastating news that Philippe Coutinho will not play again until late October.
The Brazilian playmaker- so pivotal in Liverpool’s recent good form- damaged his shoulder after being bulldozed to the ground by Swansea skipper Ashley Williams on Monday, and will require corrective surgery on his AC joint.