MICHEL Vorm is on course to return to Swansea City action when they host Manchester United this weekend.
And Spanish pair Pablo Hernandez and Angel Rangel are also battling to be fit as Michael Laudrup’s men prepare to face the Premier League leaders.
Vorm has not played since tearing a groin muscle at Manchester City at the end of October.
But the Dutch international star has been back in training for over a fortnight and is tipped to be ready to return this Sunday.
That will leave Laudrup facing something of a selection dilemma given that Gerhard Tremmel has done a sound job for Swansea while filling in between the posts.
But Swansea’s manager has hinted that Vorm has earned the right to an instant recall through his past performances for the club.
Having Vorm back in the fold will be a welcome boost for Swansea as they get set to play four league games in just nine days.
And Laudrup also has fingers crossed over Hernandez and Rangel.
Wideman Hernandez was really starting to flourish in Swansea colours before he suffered a thigh strain during the win over West Brom on November 28.
Laudrup has indicated that he expects the £5.55 million man to play some part over the festive period, but it is touch and go whether he will be ready come Sunday lunchtime.
The same goes for Rangel, who missed last Sunday’s trip to Tottenham after suffering a minor calf tear in training.
“I didn’t really feel any sharp pain when it happened but afterwards it was a bit sore and it got worse and worse,” the right-back explained.
“In the morning it was quite painful so I had a scan to see what it was, and I had a little tear, which is just one of those things.
“It’s part of the job and now I have to recover.
“I would love to be ready for Sunday. It’s going well and the calf is much better, but we will have to wait and see by the end of the week.
“Everybody wants to play against Manchester United — hopefully everyone is fit and we can perform again.”
Swansea, meantime, say there have been no talks with Leeds United over a permanent deal for Alan Tate.
The long-serving defender is currently enjoying a successful loan spell at Elland Road and Whites boss Neil Warnock suggested earlier this week that a full-time move was being discussed.
But Swansea have indicated that the only proposal so far has been to extend Tate’s loan spell until the end of the season.
Laudrup has given the fans’ favourite few opportunities this season, and he left the Liberty in search of a first-team football.
Ultimately, how long he stays in Yorkshire is likely to come down to the player.
Swansea have dismissed recent reports linking them with West Brom centre-back Craig Dawson.
Away tickets for Swansea’s Boxing Day trip to Reading and the game at Fulham on December 29 are now sold out, but there are tickets available for the home clashes with Aston Villa (New Year’s Day) and Arsenal (January 6).