Gaston Ramirez admits returning to Middlesbrough proved an “easy decision.”
The 25-year-old enjoyed a successful loan spell at the Riverside last season, playing a pivotal role in Boro’s promotion to the Premier League.
And Ramirez said he was thrilled to re-join the club on a permanent basis this summer after being released by Southampton.
The gifted Uruguayan was brilliant for Boro in the Sky Bet Championship, scoring seven goals in 18 appearances.
“It was an easy decision to come back, for me,” said Ramirez. “We did really well last season and I feel comfortable here.
“The gaffer has given me a lot of confidence.
“When I left Boro I was always thinking about coming back and I did my best to be here.
“Of course the fans played a part.
“They made me feel at home in every game, even when we played away.
“It’s really important for a player to feel comfortable and the supporters were a big part of that.”
Ramirez has experience of the Premier League with both Southampton and Hull City.
The Saints paid Bologna £12million for the playmaker in 2012 but his appearances at St Mary’s proved sporadic.
He was loaned out to Hull during the 2014-15 season,scoring just once in 22 games for the Tigers.
Ramirez played just five times for the Saints last season but regained his touch under Aitor Karanka at Boro.
He said Karanka’s faith and the presence of fellow Uruguay teammates made his adjustment period on Teesside a lot easier.
“I knew Cristhian (Stuani) and Carlos (De Pena), and the gaffer gave me his confidence – that’s important for any player,” he said in an interview with www.mfc.co.uk.
“You can try things in games, make mistakes and improve.
“I saw on Twitter how the fans wanted me to come back and I always tried to keep in touch with the gaffer.
“I saw how much people wanted me and that made me feel good.
“I’m very pleased that the fans who came to every game wanted me again and I want to say thanks to all of the supporters and staff.”
He featured as a late sub when Boro lost 2-1 at Real Betis on Monday night.