Reading striker Jason Roberts close to making injury return
Veteran Reading striker Jason Roberts says he is not ready to call time on his career ahead of his 17th season in professional football.
Roberts suffered a career-threatening hip injury in March but is making good progress and is not far off a return.
"It's coming along quite well," Roberts, 35, told BBC Radio Berkshire.
"We are ensuring I do things in the right way to make sure I don't get injured in other places which can happen with an injury like this."
Roberts began his career at Hayes in the 1996-97 season and went on to play for Wolves, Bristol Rovers, West Brom, Wigan and Blackburn before joining Reading in January 2012.
He was instrumental in helping the Royals win promotion to the Premier League that season, but he played just 12 times in the top flight last year because of injury, with Reading relegated after a disappointing campaign.
But having missed much of last year he is desperate to return and help the Berkshire club bounce back at the first attempt with a new manager at the helm in Nigel Adkins,
"I am working hard," said Roberts. "We are open minded about a return date, we are just going to see how the injury progresses.
"The most important thing is that when I return I am in a position physically to make an impact."
Roberts believes the Reading squad is better than the one that played in the Premier League last year but has warned they will have to graft in order to win promotion.
The Grenada international also believes the other relegated clubs, QPR and Wigan, should be the favourites to go up this year.
He added: "We are taking on new ideas from the manager, he has a certain way he wants to play, and in my opinion the squad is looking stronger than last season.
"We are in a good position, but we have to make sure we do all the things you have to do to win games at this level.
"He (Adkins) wants us to dominate possession but this league is about competing physically and we have to make sure we do that.
"QPR look strong, we will be strong, Wigan have strengthened but the best squads don't necessarily win the league,
"You always go into a new season positive, we have a strong squad and everything is in place for us to have a successful season.
"We are excited about what we can achieve this season but know we have to roll our sleeves up and do all the ugly stuff that helps you win games in the Championship."