Ethan Moore has given his thanks to the fans of Gloucester City Football Club for all their support during his recovery from a torn ACL suffered at the beginning of last season.
Moore was ruled out for the entire 2016/17 National League North campaign after sustaining the injury in the final training session before the Tigers travelled to Salford City on the opening day.
With a hefty bill looming for his surgery, Gloucester City Supporters Trust set up a fundraising page to help finance the operation, raising £6,000 with donations coming from football fans all over the world.
Moore, 24, returned to action at the start of the 2017/18 season but struggled to find the net despite some very good performances and has since spent some time on loan at Evesham United, scoring twice in five games.
Speaking to gloucestercityafc.com ahead of his return from loan this Saturday, Moore took the opportunity to express his gratitude to the City faithful.
“Ever since I joined the club, the fans have been great to me” said Moore. “They’ve helped me so much and I wouldn’t be in the position I am were it not for their support fundraising for the operation so I can’t thank them enough.
“I feel like I’ve got something to prove to them having gone away for a month and I hope I can repay their patience and faith in me with some goals.”
The former Cinderford Town striker, who arrived at the club after firing the Foresters to a league title in 2015/16, has just started a Strength & Conditioning degree at Hartpury College whom he scored twice for in midweek.
With Ed Williams also studying at Hartpury and Chris Knowles the first team manager, Moore feels as if the university links with the Tigers have helped him improve both on and off the pitch.
“I’d definitely say it’s been a benefit to myself studying at Hartpury” he said. “I needed full time training to get myself back and fighting fit and I’m really enjoying it there.
“Obviously Knowlesey is the manager there and he’s a great coach who has really helped me out in solo training sessions.
“Then you have Ed who I now live with so we’re pretty close and that’s really translated onto the pitch and long may it continue.”
After such a long injury lay-off, it would be unrealistic to expect Moore to be fully fit at the beginning of his return, but now he says that he is in the best condition of his life, physically and mentally.
“I feel as if I’m the fittest I’ve ever been” he said. “At the start of the season and during my recovery I wasn’t in a good place but now my physical and mental fitness has improved massively and now I just can’t wait to prove myself again to the fans.”
The Tigers face Whitehawk at the Jubilee Stadium this Saturday, with military personnel able to gain free admission to the game.