Sam Morsy has trained this week with Wigan Athletic and could make a sensational return against Nottingham Forest this weekend.
That’s according to Latics boss Warren Joyce, who says the midfielder will be considered for duty for his parent club while negotiations regarding a permanent move to Barnsley - with whom he spent the first half of the campaign on loan - are continuing.
“It’s entirely up to the player to decide what he wants to do,” Joyce revealed.
“He wasn’t available for the game against Huddersfield on Monday, but he’s trained this week.
“He’s got six or seven stitches in his head, he’s still got a headband on, but he’s been training and it’s an ongoing situation.”
Latics exercised their right to recall the player halfway through his season-long loan, although Barnsley immediately triggered a clause that allows them to sign him for a fee agreed last summer.
Until Morsy agrees personal terms, he remains a Wigan player, although Joyce admits his hands are tied in the long term.
“I think it will depend of the discussions between him and Barnsley,” the Latics boss acknowledged.
“I’ve said my piece to him, and he’s got a decision to make.”
Joyce also insisted he would lose no sleep over fielding the player in the FA Cup - which would make him ineligible for Barnsley in later rounds.
“It’s immaterial to me whether he becomes cup-tied or not,” Joyce added.
“We’ll assess him after training and see how he is.”
Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom, for his part, still expects the player to make the permanent switch to Oakwell sooner rather than later.
“We knew they would call him back, so straightaway slapped in the agreed fee which was all agreed in advance,” he said.
“It’s just a case of trying to get personal terms agreed and the deal done.”