Manchester United loanee Tahith Chong has impressed during his short period with Championship side Birmingham City and has thanked Jesse Lingard for helping him make the move.
The 21-year-old spoke to the England international about his experiences at St Andrews, following his short stint at the club in 2013/14.
The Dutchman is thriving under the stewardship of Lee Bowyer and is playing in various different roles for the manager.
The natural winger has started 10 of Birmingham’s 11 Championship matches so far this season.
After a positive start to the season which saw the Midlands club win three of their opening six league matches.
Since then, Bowyer’s side have lost four out of their last five, but Chong believes Birmingham who sit 16th in the table will turn around their poor run of form.
Speaking via the club’s official website, Chong said: “I think we had a good start to the season. Obviously, now it’s a bit tougher with the recent games but I’m sure we’ll turn that around.”
Adapting to the rigours of playing senior football week in, week out, in one of the most physical leagues in the world was always going to be a challenge for Chong, but he feels his body has adapted well.
Chong added: “I think obviously, in the first couple of weeks, you’ve got to get used to it a bit more but you try to manage your body a bit more and recover well.
“In the last two or three weeks, I’ve got to say my body is starting to get used to it more and more, which is good to see as well.”
What did Lingard advise
Before sealing a loan switch to Birmingham, Chong spoke to Lingard about his experiences at the club and what advice he would give.
The Dutch under-21 international continued: “He explained a bit about the club so I already had kind of an idea. It’s always different when you experience it yourself but I have got to say it has been fantastic for me.
“Jesse just said about the fans – if you work hard on the pitch and all the stuff like that then the fans can help you through games. And the players too. I just came in and really liked the experience.
“I just wanted to listen to the staff and players and what they wanted me to do and tried to get on with that.”
The Birmingham fans have loved the quality Chong has brought but they have also been equally impressed with his work rate.
With the first West Midlands derby against West Bromwich Albion looming on Friday at the Hawthorns, that would be the perfect venue for Chong to open his Birmingham account and get his loan side back to winning ways.