Sunderland striker Fraizer Campbell believes he is ready for a first-team return after nearly 18 months on the sidelines.
The 24-year-old, who last featured for the Black Cats on August 29 2010, has battled back to fitness from two separate knee ligament injuries.
After playing 79 minutes in the reserves' 1-0 win against Bolton Campbell feels he is back in contention again and would love to be involved in this weekend's FA Cup tie against north-east rivals Middlesbrough. He told the Sunderland Echo: "It's all I've been able to think about for the last 18 months and I'm getting closer all the time now."
He added: "If I was called up to play or be on the bench this weekend, I am ready.
"It's up to the manager to decide but if he wants to include me on the bench I will be delighted.
"There would be no-one happier than me to come back, get involved and be back amongst the goals again.
"I'll do everything I can, but of course it will take a little bit of time for me to get my sharpness back."
Campbell has been doubly unlucky with injuries as just as he had recovered from damaging his knee against Manchester City two summers ago he injured the same knee during training last April just as he was preparing for a comeback.
"It's hard to describe how frustrating it has been, but I just have to try to forget about it now and concentrate on getting back," he added.
"Thankfully, I've not had any setbacks or problems after that second one."