Former Derby County and Tottenham forward praises 'special' club

Grzegorz Rasiak has claimed that Derby County were the biggest club he ever played at, despite spells with Tottenham and Southampton.

Former Polish international forward Rasiak moved to England in 2004, joining the Rams on a free transfer, and going on to score 18 goals in 41 games as the Midlands side finished in fourth place.

Despite staying with the Championship club for just one year, the Pole became a fan favourite, and his form warranted a £3 million transfer to Tottenham Hotspur. However, he managed just eight appearances for Spurs, leaving the North Londoner’s in February 2006 to join Southampton on loan.

His move to the Saints became permanent in the summer of the same year, and he scored 28 goals in 78 games, before enjoying spells with a further seven clubs across Europe.

However, he holds the strongest affection for Derby, and, having returned to the iPro Stadium earlier this month, he told the official Rams website that Derby is a ‘special’ club for him.

The 35-year-old said: “It has been one of the biggest clubs for me. I have had a few moves, but Derby was really special because the fans really supported me during my time here.

“From the beginning it could have been hard, but I really found myself in this place. Derby will always be special.

"I moved from Poland to Italy and I couldn’t really settle. I moved to Derby and for football reasons it was a fantastic move.

“I have still got friends in Derby, all the players that played with me and I have a good relationship with the people in the club who are still here.”

Derby are one of the favourites for promotion to the Premier League this season, and Rasiak admitted that he is keen to see the Rams do well, with a ‘fantastic manager’ and ‘great players’ leading the way.

He added: “Hopefully, in the coming weeks, I can get to the Stadium to see the games because I follow the results, but I would love to see Derby from the stands.

“They play exciting football, they’ve got an fantastic manager at the club and some great players.

“They have a few experienced players like Grant and Eustacey, who I know from the past, so I think I will be, more often, at the Derby County Training Ground than before.”

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