Richard Cresswell has paid a heartfelt thanks to Sheffield United after completing his transfer to York City, writes James Shield.
The centre-forward, who scored 30 goals in 141 appearances for the South Yorkshire club, delivered the emotional tribute after signing a 12 month contract with Nigel Worthington’s side.
Describing winning over the United supporters as “one of the biggest achievements of my career” having previously represented arch-rivals Sheffield Wednesday, Cresswell told The Star: “As far as I’m concerned ‘once a Blade, always a Blade.’ I want everyone at United to know that.
“I can’t praise everyone there highly enough. From my team mates to the staff and the tea ladies, I owe them all a lot.
“But, perhaps most of all, I want to say ‘thanks’ to the fans. Because I’d been at Wednesday before I knew I had to try and win them over and I think I did that.
“By and large they’re working people who appreciate it if they see someone who is giving 100 per cent. And I can assure them that I never gave anything less in a United shirt.”
Cresswell, aged 35, arrived at Bramall Lane from Stoke City in September 2009 before completing a permanent move later that season.
He was an integral part of the side which came so close to securing an immediate return to the Championship after being relegated at the end of the 2010/11 campaign.
“Even though we didn’t go up, I’d still say that was my most enjoyable season in football,” Cresswell continued. “To get 90 points and at one stage be the third highest goalscorers in Europe was brilliant.
“It didn’t end the way we all wanted but, before that, it was something else. The partnership I had with Ched Evans that year was really good, we just clicked.”
“I didn’t play as much as I’d have liked last season but I didn’t have a problem with anyone because of it. I kept my head down and tried to contribute behind the scenes and one of the things I really enjoyed doing was trying to help the youngsters coming through.
“My time at United has been a real rollercoaster but I’m proud to have been associated with such a great club and I sincerely hope they go up.”