United States midfielder Stuart Holden has returned to training after five months out with a knee injury.

Holden missed June's Gold Cup after damaging his left knee playing against Manchester United for Premier League side Bolton.

Holden says he began training again Monday - his 26th birthday.

Writing on Twitter on Monday, the midfielder said: ''Best bday present 2 be kicking balls and running outside after 5 months out! Not long now!''

Holden needed 26 stitches to close a gash near his knee in a challenge from Jonny Evans.

But Holden is unlikely to be fit for Bolton's Premier League opener at newly promoted Queens Park Rangers on Aug. 13. He was originally expected to be out for six months, which would set his return for the middle of September.

''Not in full training, just doing work on the grass, another step forward!'' Holden said.