Scott Hogan believes he will be twice the player he was before his injury nightmare began.
It was 547 days since the 23-year-old last kicked a ball in anger as he went down with an anterior cruciate ligament injury in Brentford's 2-0 win at Rotherham last season.
He suffered a recurrence of the injury in March last year that prevented him from making a return until February 29.
And, speaking to GetWestLondon after the game, he believes he will return to the first team a better player.
He said: "I truly believe I'm better than I was. Physically I'm in incredible shape. My pace is up from what it used to be.
"I'm jumping higher and I'm stronger. Everything is, physically, I think I've improved 10-fold at least. I've watched a lot of football and Championship defenders.
"I only think the notion of coming back the same applies if the individual isn't fully applied to getting back and the mental barriers. I truly believe I'll be twice the player I was before."
Hogan, naturally, has been angry and frustrated with the cards he has been dealt and he admitted he struggled to settle in London because of it.
He added: "I'd be lying if I said I wasn't angry and frustrated. You're sitting at home and asking why is it happening to me? It's been difficult off the pitch.
"I've moved down here just after turning 22. You think about the lost time. It's been really hard to adapt to living down here with what's happened. I'd be lying if I said I enjoyed it.
"I've been home to Manchester a lot of the time because of the way it's panned out. I wouldn't wish it on anyone. I'm proud of how I've dealt with it."
Neil Greig and the medical team consisting of Matt Springham, Tom Perryman, James Purdue, Daryl Martin and Richard Clark have been working with Hogan through his injury.
And the striker paid tribute to them for not only nursing him back to fitness but also providing pastoral care.
"I think they're probably glad to see the back of me," he joked. "They're my first port of call if I'm frustrated and I take it out on them a lot.
"Greigy, Matt Springham, Daryl, Rich, Tommy, James Purdue have been great. I do take my frustrations out on them but they've been brilliant.
"They've tolerated me and understood. They are a big part of what goes on at Brentford. They're the reason why we have the team that run and run and run. They are a big part."
Hogan also paid tribute to his family and girlfriend for providing care, even with the difficulty of living in Manchester.
He explained: "My family and girlfriend have all been a great help. They're all back home (in Manchester) so it's really difficult.
"Both times I've been in hospital she's come and literally done everything for me. Everyone has helped. You're sick of people asking how you're doing. Everyone has helped me massively."
The big question is when will Hogan be selected for first team duties.
If the 23-year-old had his way, he'd be lining up against Charlton on Saturday but the decision will rest with head coach Dean Smith and the medical team and they will be taking a 'safety first' approach.
He said: "I am declaring myself available and have done since I've been out on the training pitch.
"That's just how I am and how I expect anyone who has been out for a long time to think.
"I know I've had a few comments to the gaffer over the last few weeks. It's up to the manager and the medical staff.
"Any call that comes, if I'm in the squad at the weekend or the one after that, I'm going to take it. I'm ready now in my eyes but it's not up to me."