Benjamin Mendy will be back in full training with the Manchester City squad within a month, teammate Bernardo Silva has told RMC.
Mendy has been sidelined since rupturing knee ligaments in September but is edging closer to stepping back onto the training pitch.
Earlier this week, France coach Didier Deschamps said he was hopeful of having Mendy in his squad for the World Cup.
Silva, who like Mendy joined City from Monaco last summer, said he also believed Mendy could be in action in Russia.
“Yes, of course it’s possible,” the Portugal international said. “He’s someone who works a lot.
“I think he’ll be with us in three weeks. If he starts to play and he recovers well, I think he’ll be there. I hope so for his sake.
“I’m happy he’s almost back. He really wants to go to the World Cup. I have spoken about it with him and he told me that it was a great ambition of his to play in that competition. He’s going to do everything to be there.”
Injury cost Silva a place in the Portugal squad that won the 2016 European Championship.
The 23-year-old’s performances for City suggest he could be one of their stars at the World Cup, but he said he has a weakness — his right foot.
“Yes, it’s a problem I have,” he added. “When I was younger, my dad, my grandfather and everyone said: ‘Bernardo, work on your right foot.’
“I knew that too, but I don’t like playing with my right. So I didn’t train and it hurt me a bit because now I’m a bit limited. My right foot is very bad, I have to be honest.”
Ian is ESPN’s French football correspondent. Twitter: @ian_holyman