Reda Khadra says Blackburn Rovers fans backing him allowed him to be at his best during his loan spell.
The Germany under-21 international finished the season with four goals and three assists in 27 Championship appearances, as he and fellow loanee Jan Paul van Hecke built a strong relationship with the Ewood Park faithful.
“I think our connection with the fans came because JP and I gave 100% on the pitch every game, we never acted like we were only loan players who didn’t care about the club. We would really care if we didn’t win,” Reda said.
“The bond between me and the fans was great. They pushed me and gave me confidence. I knew if I tried something and it didn’t come off they would still back me.”
That sense of togetherness continued off the pitch.
“As a team we would go out for meals together, the group was really tight. I really enjoyed it, you could speak to anyone in the dressing room, there weren’t any cliques and they were like a family to me.
“We were disappointed to not finish in the play-offs but in football you need to keep going and hopefully next season they will do it. Let’s hope we see each other in the Premier League one day.”
A highlight for Reda was winning the Goal of the Season award for his fantastic free-kick against QPR.
“It was a pretty good season for me and the award was a great feeling. To have the trust from the manager was really important for my progress. I was on the bench for the first few games but then I got into the team and did well from that point on.
“You understand the game better the more you experience it. If someone gives you the chance when you’re out on loan, I feel you do become a better player.”