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Fulham midfielder Jimmy Bullard aims to banish the memory of his horrific knee injury when he makes an emotional return to St James’ Park.

Bullard was sidelined for 18 months following the injury which threatened to curtail his career.

But the Fulham midfielder has battled his way back to fitness and is now hoping to help repay the club’s faith by helping to steer Hodgson’s men to safety.

By coincidence, Fulham’s last away win – a 2-1 victory on Tyneside in September 2006 – was achieved on the day Bullard suffered his injury.

Fulham’s travel sickness must improve if they are to survive relegation but withKeegan looking for his first win since returning to Newcastle as manager, the outcome of the game is vital to both teams.

But for Bullard it is also a chance to exorcise the ghosts of that horrific moment when his career was almost ended.

“It has been in the back of my mind and it was one of the first games I looked for at the beginning of the season,” said Bullard.

“I love playing at St James’ Park, it just so happens to be the place where I did my knee.

“I am looking forward to going back there. I’ll touch the place where I got injured and hope it never happens again.

“It has been a lucky ground for us. For us as players and as a team a win there could put us in a very good position. So hopefully we can go there and get one.”