POTTERS loan star Oussama Assaidi has targeted a return to first team action before the end of the season.
The Moroccan has not appeared for Stoke since January after picking up a knee injury on the mid-season training camp in Dubai.
Speaking at a City 7s event at St. Luke's Primary School in Hanley, Assaidi revealed he is progressing well from his set back.
"Things are certainly getting better, but my knee is still not fully healed," he told Stoke City Player.
"I could forget about the pain and play, but that would be a massive long term risk, so I believe it's best to be patient and wait for it to get better before playing.
"I am recovering well so I hope it isn't too long until I can be picked to play again."
City are currently fourth in the Premier League form table having won three games in a row and losing just once in the last nine games.
Assaidi admits it has been frustrating watching from the sidelines but was full of praise for his teammates outstanding form.
"The lads have been flying lately, they've done incredibly well and have been playing fantastic," he said.
"Of course it is horrible to watch on from the stands, because I'm itching to be involved but I am very proud and happy for the whole team. Everybody is playing brilliant lately."
The 25-year-old will see his loan spell with the Potters come to an end at the end of the season and with parent club Liverpool looking like serious title contenders Assaidi says he is uncertain about where his long term future lies.
"I really don't know. I'm unsure what Stoke or Liverpool wants," he admitted.
"I am really happy to play for Stoke and I am happy they gave me a chance to play regularly.
"I get on well with my teammates and I'm very happy playing for the manager here. The club is good for me and my time here has been a good one."
He went on to say: "I still have a contract with Liverpool and I hope the boss [Brendan Rodgers] gives me a chance.
"If not, I do not want to sit on the bench because I want to play games so you never know what can happen in the future."