Danny Ings hailed the Southampton supporters for the warm welcome he received after making his debut as a second-half substitute against former club Burnley.
Saints opened up their Premier League campaign with a goalless draw against the stubborn Lancashire outfit, who repelled countless second-half attacks to earn a share of the spoils.
The hosts carried a greater threat after the introduction of Ings 11 minutes into the second period, arriving from the bench along with fellow debutant Mohamed Elyounoussi, and receiving a huge ovation from his new supporters.
“It was fantastic,” he said. “I was itching to get on, from warming up on the side, and to get the reception I got coming on was great.
“Having the club and the support behind me like that is incredible and I appreciate it a lot.
“I was frustrated not to win the game, but I thought we really grew into it in the second half and created a lot of chances.
“Overall, we’re ok with that performance, we just need to build on it now.
“I’ve had two or three years of terrible luck and frustration really, so to come here, be free and play my football – I couldn’t be happier, or have a better club for me right now in my career.
“I’m extremely grateful and I can’t wait to move forward with the club.”