Sheffield United: 'It makes me feel loved' admits Bramall Lane favourite as he thanks the fans for their support

Chris Basham has thanked Sheffield United supporters for their backing as he attempts to win back his place in the starting eleven, admitting the sound of them singing his name whenever he warms-up or comes on makes him “feel loved.”

Saturday, 23rd October 2021, 11:30 am

Despite his limited first team opportunities this season, the defender remains a staunch advocate of manager Slavisa Jokanovic and the work he has undertaken to revitalise the club following last term’s relegation from the Premier League.

But one of those steps - the switch from a back three to a back four - has been partly responsible for nudging Basham out of the team, together with the form of John Egan and the on-loan Ben Davies.

“For me, when I’ve been playing nearly every game over the last eight years or so, I’ve not really heard them chant my name before,” Basham, who has entered the closing stages of his contract, said. “Now they do when I’m coming on or getting ready. It makes me feel great. It makes me feel loved.

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“Genuinely, I’m very grateful for how they are with me. They’ll always be close to my heart.”

Aged 33, Basham told The Star ahead of tomorrow’s visit to Barnsley that he will review his future in “January or February” unless he triggers an appearance based clause which will activate a 12 month extension to his existing deal.

United have prepared for tomorrow’s visit to Barnsley 17th in the table, despite experiencing an upturn in their performances levels since this season’s first international break. Appointed last summer, Jokanovic last night insisted his primary focus remains on working with the squad currently at his disposal after describing himself as “realistic” about the club’s plans for the January transfer window.

“We don’t want a season of ‘that just passed us by’ because the manager doesn’t deserve that and the players we’ve brought in don’t deserve that,” Basham, a two time promotion winner with United, said. “As a footballer, at 33, I want to be playing every week. I love playing. I love helping the lads.

Chris Basham hopes to start against Barnsley this weekend, when Sheffield United will look to get back to winning ways: Simon Bellis / Sportimage

“I’ve got to make sure I’m ready when called upon by the manager. He’s been great too and has got a really good set of staff around him.”

Sheffield United face Barnsley at Oakwell next: Nathan Stirk/Getty Images
Chris Basham has thanked the Sheffield United fans: Darren Staples / Sportimage