Aleksandar Mitrovic is back in training following injury, Newcastle United confirmed on Wednesday.
And the Serbian forward’s return to fitness could hardly have come at a better time as the Magpies struggle to find the net in the Premier League.
Rafa Benitez clearly does not favour Mitrovic and would be open to his sale, but only a bid in excess of £15million is likely to see the Newcastle boss sanction a transfer.
Such a move remains unlikely and so Mitrovic must look to make an impact in the first team at St James’ Park.
The 23-year-old may lack the link-up play of Joselu or the movement of Dwight Gayle, but he is a proven goalscorer at a good level – and Newcastle’s top scorer, in the second half of the season, has just four goals.
Both Joselu and Gayle have missed chances their team-mate might well have taken, too, with United’s number nine particularly guilty against Swansea City last week.
And so, while Mitrovic waits on a switch this month, there will be opportunities for him to play his way back into Benitez’s thinking.
An appearance at Manchester City may be unlikely, but one would expect the former Anderlecht man to come into the fold for the FA Cup trip to Chelsea.
A good performance there would surely lead to a chance against Burnley in the league and a scoring streak would give Benitez little option but to rely on Mitrovic.
It may be that the wantaway forward still has a future on Tyneside, with this a particularly timely return.