You must be delighted that the fans have taken to you so quickly...
Yeah. The relationship with the fans has been growing from the day I signed, maybe even before. Because of the year I didn’t come with the medical and all the publicity surrounding it , maybe United supporters feel like they’ve known me for a longer time. They certainly helped me. I got so many letters during my rehab from fans and United players encouraging me to get fit again and come to United. That contact meant so much to me and I wanted to pay it back when I finally played for the club. I want to have a good time on the pitch and with the fans too. Fans come out hoping to watch a great game and have fun...that’s what I want to give them.
You said at the end of the season that winning personal awards meant nothing if the team didn’t win anything, but it must be a compensation to know that everyone from fans to Premiership players and team-mates rate you?
I came to United to win trophies with the team and we won nothing so I can’t be satisfied with that. But yes, of course it’s a fantastic honour that so many different people voted for me. That means a lot to me and is great for my confidence. It’s a great reward for a year of hard work as well. These awards give me great motivation to go on from this point and try to do the same again.
A few observers reckoned you faded a little towards the end of the last season as your year out from the game finally took its toll. Do you agree?
If you’ve been out for a year, you want to know how long you can carry on for and I’m happy at the way it went. It wasn’t as if I had one or two months when I didn’t score, it was continuous over the whole season. I was completely fit. Of course at the end of the season you feel more tired, but I think that’s the case for all the players, not just me.