Carlisle happy to be back

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Clarke Carlisle has explained how a positive outlook helped him overcome a serious thigh injury.

The Watford defender made his first Premiership appearance of the season in the 4-2 win over Portsmouth on Monday, after fighting back from surgery.

Carlisle's last serious injury was five years ago, when a problem with his cruciate knee ligament kept him on the sidelines for 18 months.

He admits he had problems coming to terms with that injury, and ended up having to be booked in to the Sporting Chance clinic.

"When I did my cruciate I went off the rails. I didn't handle it well at all," Carlisle told the Daily Star.

"You live and learn and hopefully grow up. I was determined to come through an injury problem better this time.

"When I went to the rehab clinic, there were people who helped me a great deal and gave me some values to live my life by.

"It's been extremely frustrating to be out for so long but you can't let it make you lose sight of real life and real priorities."

Carlisle could be selected for Watford's FA Cup semi-final against Manchester United this weekend, but is unsure if he will be called upon.

"It would be disrespectful to the other lads who have worked hard all season to start thinking about that," he said.

"I wouldn't want to take away anything from what they have done.

"But if the chance was offered to me, of course I would not turn it down."