Celina: Fans One of the Biggest Reasons For Return
Tuesday, 31st Aug 2021 16:48
Bersant Celina says his relationship with the Town fans from his previous loan spell at the club was one of the main reasons he decided to return to Portman Road for 2021/22.
The 24-year-old’s season-long loan move from French second tier side Dijon was confirmed earlier today, TWTD having been first to reveal his imminent arrival yesterday morning and the Blues' interest back at the start of July.
The Kosovo international had already been in discussions with the Blues for a few weeks at that point and says he was delighted to hear from Town.
“I was really happy, it was always very positive for me to hear about the interest and looking at what the club is doing, bringing new players in and what they’re trying to do for the future,” he told iFollow Ipswich.
“It was very exciting for me. That’s why I’m here, I want to be a part of it.”
Looking back on his spell in the 2017/18 season, in which he made 26 starts and 12 sub appearances and scored eight times - most of them spectacular efforts - when on loan from Manchester City, he said: “I had a great time when I was here last time. It was a good time for me.
“It was my second year as a professional, playing in a big stadium in front of fans. It was really important for me.
“Of course, I’m happy and excited. I had a fantastic relationship with the fans and I can’t wait to see them all again.”
He says that relationship was a key factor in his return: “It’s one of the biggest reasons I’ve come back.”
Celina says the players who have been assembled at Town this summer was also an attraction.
“It’s a really good squad and that’s also a reason why I’m here; because I can help them and they can help me as well. I think it’ll be a good match,” he said.
Celina has had a tough summer having developed the heart infection pericarditis in late July after contracting Covid a month earlier.
However, a fortnight ago his cardiologist gave him the all-clear to return to training in due course.
“I tested positive for Covid and afterwards I felt fine and I did the regular check we do, the ECG, the heart test and something came up and it was strange,” he said.
“I did another test and I had an infection on my heart. It was quite a shock for me but it’s gone now and I’m healthy and I’m happy.”
Reflecting on the recovery process, he continued: “It’s been about not putting pressure on myself, just trying to relax. Like I say, I’m good now and I’m ready to get started.”
Celina says he’s greatly looking forward to getting back into action at Portman Road: “I can’t wait, honestly. Hopefully, the next game or the game after that.”
The forward is due to join up with the Kosovo squad later this week ahead of their World Cup qualifiers away against Georgia on Friday and at home to Greece on Sunday and Spain a week on Wednesday.
However, given his lack of recent action, whether he is involved in the games remains to be seen, particularly the opening fixture. Georgia is on the red list with EFL clubs not making their players available for games in countries in that position.
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