MATCH PREVIEW: Erhun has nothing to prove on his return to the ABAX
Erhun Oztumer insists he has nothing to prove on his return to the ABAX Stadium on Saturday (September 24).
The 25-year-old midfielder is back at Peterborough United for the first time since his contentious free transfer to League One rivals Walsall in the summer.
Oztumer was a fans’ favourite at Posh and won’t celebrate if he scores for his new club against his old one.
He has confirmed he quit the ABAX after being asked to take a cut in wages.
Oztumer said: “Of course there is more of an incentive than normal to do well on Saturday because I’m playing against my old club
“But I don’t feel I have anything to prove to anyone.
“I had a good time at Posh and my feelings for the club will never change.
“It was disappointing the way it ended, but I’m happy with the way things have worked out and I’m certain Posh will continue to be successful.
“I’m looking forward to a great game between two good footballing sides.”
“I loved it for two seasons at Posh. I had my fair share of ups and downs, but I will always be grateful to the club for giving me an opportunity in the Football League and for the managers and the staff for giving me the opportunity to express myself.
“When I signed for Posh I had a deal in place which gave the club the option of a third year, but a paycut wasn’t something I expected or wanted.
“It was a shame, but we decided to part ways and I was delighted to be able to sign for another top League One club like Walsall.
“Like Posh they play in a way that suits my game and I’ve loved every minute of it with them so far.
“The fans have taken to me at Walsall as they did at Posh. I have some great memories from great games at Posh and if I do manage to score against them I won’t be celebrating.
“I’ll make that gesture for the supporters. I have a lot of respect and gratitude for the way they treated me.
“I’m really looking forward to coming back.
“Obviously I want to win the game, but success for both clubs this season would suit me.
“Walsall enjoyed an outstanding season last season, but we’ve had to re-build the team.
“It’s just started to come together for us in recent matches.
“They play me in the hole just behind two strikers or in midfield and it’s gone really well.
“I’m really enoying my football. I’ve managed to score a few goals and win some man-of-the-match awards just like I used to at Posh!”
Oztumer has scored three times in nine appearances for Walsall this season.
Oztumer scored seven goals in 57 appearances (13 as a substitute) for Posh and was a star player during a purple patch of form under former manager Graham Westley last season.
Oztumer was originally brought into the side last season by current Posh boss Grant McCann having been ostracized by another former manager, Dave Robertson.
McCann said: “We know all about Erhun’s ability and the threat he poses.
“He is one of several good players Walsall possess and we will have to watch him carefully.
“It was Erhun’s decision to leave and it was one he was entitled to make after he turned down our contract offer.
“There are no hard feelings. These things happen all the time in football.”