Adam Johnson could make his first team return at Chelsea on Sunday after missing the last 12 games with an ankle injury.
The England winger is ahead of schedule in his bid to return to first team duty and is itching to re-join his team-mates as the season edges towards an exciting climax.
“My ankle is almost there and I’m back in training again so I should be playing again soon, all being well,” he said.
“When I first picked up the injury, you are given a realistic target to aim for in terms of playing again, but it’s usually longer than it will actually be. The medical team have to err on the side of caution so you take your time rehabilitating.”
Johnson admits he’s found it difficult being side-lined for so long and though he enjoyed the win over Reading at the weekend, there was only one place he wanted to be as his team-mates celebrated – out on the pitch with them!
“It’s been tough watching every single game to be fair, not just the Reading game,” he said. “You don’t want to miss any matches, so to have had to sit out while he lads have had such a hectic schedule isn’t easy.
Hopefully I can play my part now and spread the workload
He admits than the carrot of playing in the FA Cup semi-final is an incentive in itself to get back as quickly as possible, particularly as he’s never been past the last eight before in the competition.
“The furthest I got was the quarter-finals with Middlesbrough so this is as far as I’ve been in the FA Cup,” he said.
“I’ve been lucky enough to play at Wembley a few times for England so I know what it’s like but for us to be in the FA Cup semi-final and playing Man United is fantastic.
“These are the games you don’t want to miss and I’m no different. We’re just two victories from lifting the FA Cup and we’ll be doing everything we can to win it.”
Though the Kyiv game is likely to come too soon for the 23-year-old, he believes the Europa League dream is far from over.
He said: “The lads know what they have to do against Kyiv - it won’t be easy because they are a dangerous side, but at home, we fancy ourselves against anyone so who knows?
“I was in the squad when Middlesbrough reached the UEFA Cup final a few years back and it was an amazing night so we have to give our all and see where it takes us.”