McNulty feared for future

Kidney problem put defender's career on the line

McNulty: On the road to recovery

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Jim McNulty has revealed that doctors told him he might never play again after suffering a kidney injury.

Brighton defender Jim McNulty has revealed that doctors told him he might never play again after suffering a kidney injury.

The 24-year-old sustained the knock during the Seagulls' defeat to Crewe at the end of February and is now recuperating at home after having the damaged organ removed.

McNulty hopes to return at the start of next season but admits his career was hanging in the balance at one point.

"I was on the bed in the hospital after the scan when the surgeon said 90 per cent of the kidney is mush and I don't believe you can play again," he told the club's official website.

"I asked him to ring the club doctor and at least speak to the FA because he hadn't dealt much with footballers. In the end it was fine and he has revised his opinion. He spoke with the FA quite extensively.

"I have totally got my appetite back. Before the operation my body fat was only 7.9 per cent, which is super low, so everything I have lost is pure muscle, the majority of it from my legs. It is when I start working that I will gain that weight again."