David Moyes gave a positive update on the fitness of Nayef Aguerd ahead of West Ham United’s Premier League fixture at Liverpool on Wednesday evening.
Looking for a first win at Anfield since 2015, the Irons travel to Merseyside hoping to extend a five-game unbeaten run in all competitions and will be buoyed on by a memorable 3-2 win over the Reds at London Stadium last season.
While Aguerd is still a way from first-team action, Moyes was confident the Hammers No27 could make his return before the World Cup. He is also likely to feature for the U21s to help build his match fitness over the next weeks.
Ruled out since picking up an injury in a pre-season fixture at Rangers, the defender has stepped up his return to action over the coming weeks. Moyes is delighted to see Aguerd make positive steps in his recovery.
"It is really good news that Nayef is on his way back," Moyes said. "We brought him in as a key player, so for him to get injured in pre-season is very difficult for us.
"He is very close. He has started training. He is not fully integrated yet with the [other] players but he is getting close to playing.
"I think he will definitely feature before the World Cup. I couldn’t tell you if that is one week’s time or two weeks’ time because he has had no match practice yet. He has not been involved in the Premier league yet.
"It is more likely that we will look to get him games in Europe or U21s games before we start considering him for the Premier League."
With Kurt Zouma and Craig Dawson missing the 1-1 draw at Southampton on Sunday, Moyes also offered an update on the fitness of the pair ahead of Liverpool.
“Kurt has done a little bit of training but I don’t know if it is going to make him right yet," Moyes stated."Craig Dawson we are unsure about."
The boss also confirmed that Maxwel Cornet, who has been out of action since picking up a calf injury in the first half of our 2-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers in early October, will miss the trip to Merseyside.
Moyes added: "[Maxwel Cornet] has had a little bit of a calf strain. He is getting close, probably going to train this week but he is not [ready for Liverpool]."