Sunderland striker Michael Chopra is determined to make home-town club Newcastle pay for almost 'destroying' his career.
The 24-year-old spent half his life on the books at the St James' Park club from the schoolboy ranks but after failing to make the breakthrough as the likes of Alan Shearer, Patrick Kluivert and Michael Owen stood in his way, Chopra decided the time was right to seek pastures new during the summer of 2006.
Chopra will lock horns with his former club on Saturday determined to gain revenge for his disappointment, saying: "I thought I deserved a lot more chances than I got. I don't know if that was because of the managers or whatever, but I thought going into training, working hard in training, stuff like that, I just thought I was going to get more of an opportunity."
He added: "When the time came and they offered me a new contract, I decided to step away from it and get out of the club before I destroyed my career any more."
Chopra appeared only as a substitute in the return fixture at St James', when a double from Owen secured all three points for the Magpies.
He trained alongside the England star during the latter stages of his time on Tyneside, and admits the opportunity to learn from the big-name strikers with whom he has rubbed shoulders over the years has helped him hone his game.
Chopra said: "I have been fortunate to play with some great players, some top-class internationals - Michael Owen, Alan Shearer, Patrick Kluivert, and now I am training with Djibril Cisse and people like that.
"I have no doubt that what the manager is doing with this club, he will be bringing more top international players in.
"You can only learn and you can only get better picking up different things from all these top players."
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