Alex Pearce feels he’s on track for a round one return after ticking off another ‘big milestone’ recently in his recovery from a mid-season ankle injury.

Pearce, who recently signed a contract extension that will see him at Fremantle until 2022, said that he’s hoping to be able to return to training by the new year.

“I feel really good, I just got out of the moon boot recently, now I’m walking freely which is a big milestone for me,” Pearce said.

“From here, we’ll slowly start to get jogging, running and join in football drills from there.

“There’s still quite a long process from here. It’s been nice to tick of a few big milestones, getting off the cast, getting off the crutches and getting off the moon boot.

“It really feels like I’m getting back and getting closer.”

Pearce said that the aim was to return even better than he was in the first half of 2019, when many commentators said he was in All Australian form.

“I still think I’ll be able to get a good portion of the pre-season in,” Pearce said.

“We’ll see how things go, but by around Christmas time, I should hopefully be joining in with a bit of training and I still think I have a really good couple months of pre-season training to be fit and firing for round one.

“My goal hasn’t been to get back to that form, it’s to really take it to a new level and keep improving.

“I’m confident that the amount of pre-season and gym work that I’ll be able to get through, I’ll be able to improve as an athlete and improve as a footballer, which will hopefully, have some really good results next year.”