'They've made me feel a million dollars' – Magic man will treasure his City love and latest gong
PUBLISHED: 16:29 29 April 2018 | UPDATED: 18:02 29 April 2018
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James Maddison’s day to remember ensured it wasn’t just Wes Hoolahan who experienced heightened emotions on Norwich City’s Carrow Road climax.
As City’s stellar servant Hoolahan bowed out after 10 years in yellow with victory against Leeds, their shining light this term in Maddison collected the Barry Butler Memorial Trophy – a player of the season award sewn up months ago.
“I’ve exceeded expectations and I even got a bit emotional myself, because I knew I’d had a good season and I knew the fans had enjoyed it – but when you hear your name read out as player of the season, it’s a special moment.
“So to see the fans get up on their feet and give me a standing ovation, I’ll treasure that forever.
“The fans here have been brilliant with me and I can’t speak highly enough of them. They’ve supported us through thick and thin, and on a personal level too they have been brilliant with me.
“They’ve made me feel a million dollars when I’m on the pitch and if you’ve got fans that can install confidence in you, then you can go a long way at that club and I’m so grateful to them.
“I knew I had the quality to produce but at a young age and – even if I’m critical of myself – during my times at Coventry and Aberdeen, I maybe showed glimpses but not that consistency.
“I always watch the games back and I’m so happy with the consistency of my performances.
Maybe in the last two weeks it’s dropped a little bit from my standards, but I’m a self-critical guy so I’d say that anyway. I just can’t thank the fans enough.”
Alongside his own wonderful achievement in what was his first full season of Canaries action, it wasn’t lost on Maddison what the day meant to the club – and one team-mate in particular.
“It was a lot to take in to be honest, because I think everyone was emotional for Wes,” said Maddison, who had ‘Thanks for everything Wessi’ scrawled on the vest he played in, under his shirt.
“It was a brilliant day. The reception the fans gave Wes and the team as a whole, throughout the whole game, was just brilliant and it’s a day I won’t forget.
“I had a message for Wesley and I was going to take my shirt off at the end of the game anyway, just to show him how much he means to me and everyone else.
“I was dying for a goal too. It wasn’t to be – I could’ve had a hat-trick on another day, but the keeper pulled off a good save and I made him work a couple of times.
“But the day was about Wes, so I’m not really too bothered.”
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