Nottingham Forest’s Jamie Ward says he hopes to be included in the squad for Saturday’s East Midlands derby.
The attacker has been sidelined recently with a minor injury but could return in time to face his former club.
Ward told Forest Player HD: “It’s perfect timing, isn’t it?! I’ve done this before when I’ve been injured and come back for the local derby at Pride Park. The game finished 1-1, Chris Cohen scored and I scored for Derby.
“The adrenaline always gets you through it regardless of a lack of minutes and stuff like that. You will always get through this game.”
Ward accepts that he is likely to receive a frosty reception at the iPro Stadium but hopes respect among players and fans will win the day.
He said: “Boos don’t bother me – I get it every week, so it’s not going to make any difference.
“At the end of the game I’ll show my respect because I didn’t get the chance to say bye and thanks. I’ll applaud our fans first and then I’ll go and do the rounds.
“Four and a half years is the longest I’ve ever been at a club, which in football is a long time. I’ll show the Derby fans my respect by going round at the end of the game but, more importantly, it’s about the team getting a positive result.
“There’s never a really bad tackle in this game, or a punch-up leading to a sending off. I don’t think it’s a naughty, nasty game between the players – we show each other respect because it’s our job - but we’ve had bad injuries, red cards, fans on the pitch and stuff like that.
“Hopefully there’s none of that this week and there’s a positive outcome for Nottingham Forest.”