The Palace manager confirmed that Ferguson had returned to training with the senior squad, but stated that Under-23s football would be his next challenge before joining the first-team matchday squad.
Patrick Vieira has revealed Nathan Ferguson’s next steps on his journey to full fitness, as he gave a team news update before the meeting with Everton on Sunday.
“That will be his first step,” he said in his pre-match press conference. “What will be important for him is to do a couple of weeks of full training with the first-team first.
“Then the next step will be to play at least an hour with the Under-23s before thinking about playing with the first-team. He is doing full training now with the first-team.
“Nathan and [Eberechi] Eze are doing well.”
Read an in-depth feature interview with Ferguson on his battle with injury inside the Southampton matchday programme by ordering HERE.
Vieira also gave an update on the fitness of Joachim Andersen and James McArthur, who have been forced to watch from the sidelines in recent weeks due to injury.
“Joachim took some part in training in the last couple of days with the team,” he explained. “James is feeling better as well.
“He has started doing some individual training on the field, and this morning he took part in the first 15-20 minutes of the training session – but he will not be involved in the Everton game.”