Danny Rose admits he expected a negative reception from Tottenham fans when he came on against Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Defender Rose, who in the summer suggested he wanted to leave the club, thanked Spurs’ travelling support for their backing in the Bernabeu and insists he now wants to focus on winning back his place for Tottenham and England.
Spurs took a valuable point from their 1-1 draw with the European champions and Rose made his first appearance since injuring his knee in January and since his controversial comments made in August.
Rose told The Sun he wanted to play up north before he retires and said he was not being paid what he believes he is worth at Spurs. He also criticised the club’s transfer policy, claiming he often had to search for new recruits on Google.
The 27-year-old was made to apologise publicly but there was no hint of lingering animosity from Tottenham’s supporters on Tuesday.
They applauded him onto the pitch before singing his name during the match and afterwards, when Rose re-emerged for some extra running.
“I was expecting a frosty reception from the fans tonight so I just have to say thank you to them for giving me a great reception when I came on and when I was training afterwards,” Rose said.
“I want to thank them again for chanting my name. I’m trying to look forward now for the rest of the season. First and foremost I have to try to win my shirt back.
“It’s gone now, my manager has forgotten about it and we all move forward and we try to win this club a trophy. It’s forgotten about. My opinions will be voiced in a different way from now on.”
Rose had been out for almost nine months after damaging his medial ligaments but while it was initially considered a fairly manageable injury, the full-back was then forced to have surgery in May.
“The past eight months have been very difficult, very frustrating,” Rose said.
“It’s been hard to watch the lads do well last season and even this season they’ve done very well. It’s been difficult to watch. But to come on for the last 15 minutes (against Real), it was special and I can’t wait to get going now.”
On his lengthy absence, Rose said: “It’s taken a lot longer than expected but I’m over the moon I’m back.
“I want to win my shirt back here, win my shirt back for England. I want to win something here this season and I want to be in the World Cup squad at the end of the season.
“My season starts now and I can’t wait to get going.”
Rose replaced Fernando Llorente against Real and slotted into an unfamiliar role of central midfield as Tottenham held on for a share of the spoils.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s penalty had earlier cancelled out Raphael Varane’s own-goal and Rose revealed his call-up was a surprise even to him.
“I wasn’t supposed to be involved,” Rose said. “The plan in my head was that I would play some minutes against West Ham next week.
“I did well in training on Sunday and I got in the changing room and was getting ready to have a shower.
“The manager called me upstairs and said, ‘you’re doing well, do you think you could do 10, 15 minutes?’ I said, ‘yeah, of course no problem.’
“It’s just been an unexpected couple of days because I thought I’d be watching it on TV at home. It’s amazing he put me on tonight in midfield as well.
“It’s been a frustrating eight months but these last couple of days have made it all worth it.”