'They give me power when I have none left' - Award-winning Pukki pays City fans tribute

Teemu Pukki with his Championship player of the year award, following a dazzling season and a swanky night at the 2019 EFL Awards. Photo: Andrew Fosker/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

Teemu Pukki with his Championship player of the year award, following a dazzling season and a swanky night at the 2019 EFL Awards. Photo: Andrew Fosker/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

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Teemu Pukki is thankful for his prestigious EFL Championship award - but all he has eyes for now is the big prize on offer for Norwich City.

Both Max Aarons and Teemu Pukki made the cut for Norwich City - and for the EFL team of the year for 2019. Photo: Michael Zemanek/BPI/REX/ShutterstockBoth Max Aarons and Teemu Pukki made the cut for Norwich City - and for the EFL team of the year for 2019. Photo: Michael Zemanek/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

The English language is in need of more superlatives to do justice to the Finland striker’s phenomenal season and incredible impact, since joining City as a free agent in the summer following his Brondby exit.

Some 26 league goals later Pukki was named Championship player of the season at Sunday night’s 2019 EFL Awards in west London, safely included in the EFL team of the season and still dreaming about what the next few weeks has in store.

“This is a big thing for me – but the biggest thing is still to come; I’m a team player and if we go up, it will be much bigger than this,” smiled a delighted Pukki.

“It feels good. It’s been a great season. For sure I didn’t expect this. I believed in myself that I could do well in this league, but it’s been a great season and I didn’t believe I could be stood here now.

Norwich City's Jamal Lewis, Teemu Pukki and Max Aarons were all named in the EFL Championship team of the 2018-19 season. Photo: Andrew Fosker/BPI/REX/ShutterstockNorwich City's Jamal Lewis, Teemu Pukki and Max Aarons were all named in the EFL Championship team of the 2018-19 season. Photo: Andrew Fosker/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

“Of course we know there are still six big, big games to go and we need to be focused and ready in each of the games.

“But if we play at our current level I don’t think there is a team that can beat us. So we just need to be focused and go for every game like it’s the biggest of our lives.”

MORE: Norwich City’s success at the 2019 EFL Awards – how it unfolded

That starts with Reading’s visit on Wednesday, in front of a Carrow Road crowd full of Canaries supporters who have taken City’s Finnish striker into their hearts.

“I enjoy playing so much in front of them, and they also give me power in the moments when I start to feel I have no power left any more,” he added.

“When I hear them cheering us, then I can still do the couple more sprints that are needed.”

It wasn’t just Pukki left to thank his team-mates at the EFL Awards; Max Aarons joined him in the EFL team of the season as the EFL’s young player of the year.

The duo plus Jamal Lewis were also named in the Championship XI of the season, managed by Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder.

“I’ve been really impressed – not just with Max but the other guys as well,” said Pukki. “But for Max, it is totally deserved to win that trophy as well.

“It could have been so many of our players stood here right now and I’m really proud to be a part of this team.”

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