‘Call me what you like’ - Balint Bajner is keen to win over Ipswich Town supporters
Wide-eyed Ipswich Town new boy Bálint Bajner has told supporters ‘call me what you want’, such is his desire to impress.
The 6ft 5in Hungarian striker yesterday put pen to paper on a one-year deal, as did French-Mauritian central midfielder Kevin Bru – the pair having both impressed on trial over the last fortnight.
Bajner, 23, has most recently been playing in the ‘B’ side of German giants Borussia Dortmund, having failed to turn a loan switch into anything longer-term at West Ham as a teenager.
He admitted it has always been a dream to play in English football and you could see just how much he wanted to earn a deal when he ran to celebrate in front of the away fans – with the blowing of kisses and a bow – after scoring a fine goal in Tuesday night’s 2-1 friendly win at Southend United.
It was a moment which led to fans discussing potential chants for the big front man – the only problem being no-one knew how to pronounce his name.
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“In Hungary it is said ‘By-ner’,” says the man himself. “Fans can say it how they like though, they can say ‘Badge-ner’ if they like, but the truth is ‘By-ner’.”
Talk of supporters is a recurring theme in Bajner’s interview, the front man’s slightly-broken English delivered with a beaming smile and the upmost politeness.
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Upon being welcomed to the club, he replied: “Thank you very much. I’m really happy that I’ve signed for Ipswich. I came to trial and I tried to give my best so that the manager, the players, all the staff and the fans would like me.
“I enjoyed the goal celebration (at Southend) because I tried to show the fans thank you for coming away (to Southend). I want to give my best for this club and the fans because they are the most important.”
Having trained in front of more than 4,000 fans at Portman Road yesterday morning, as part of Ipswich Town’s annual Open Day, Bajner enthused: “It’s been unbelievable. I’ve really enjoyed it, they (the fans) are amazing and I hope I can make a lot of celebrations for them. It’s going to be fun.”
He added: “My dream, always in my life, was to come and play in England. Now I get the chance at Ipswich, one of the big clubs in England and one I really like. I hope we can work together well and get nice things in the future.
“I know a lot about the club because before me you have some Hungary players here – Tamas Priskin and Marton Fulop. I know this is a big club, I think it’s a Premier League club. I hope we can go up in the future.”