The midfielder gave his thoughts to barnsleyfc.co.uk after joining us permanently!
Mike Bähre has agreed to sign permanently with Barnsley Football Club after an impressive first season on-loan with the Reds.
The attack-minded midfielder always intended to prolong his stay under Head Coach Daniel Stendel, after previously admitting during the season he felt ‘at home’ and was ‘enjoying his football more than ever’ in Barnsley.
Speaking to barnsleyfc.co.uk, Bähre said: “I’m so happy, relieved even, that it’s finally happened. When I came here nine months ago I had an expectation, a dream of sorts, of what I wanted from the loan. And that is exactly what has happened now.
“We had an amazing season and I feel I played my part in that. I was OK at the start but I think that in the second half of the campaign I really showed my best form as we claimed second-place.”
Joining us full-time from Hannover 96, the 23-year-old midfielder still feels slightly disappointed about not scoring as often as he’d have liked. But he takes comfort in the knowledge that he was involved in the creation of plenty of important goals.
“I assisted many times,” he explained.
“Even if it wasn’t the actual assist, I was often involved in the build-up, or kicking off the press which is what the Gaffer asks from me. Of course I wanted to get more goals, and I’ll be looking to improve on that in the Championship.”
The Championship is where Bähre will line up alongside his teammates next season, and he told us of a very relevant, and somewhat poignant memory from a couple of years ago.
“I was in England, in London with my family because we came to watch Arsenal play Liverpool just before Christmas in 2017. But we were here a few days and that was a Friday night, so the next day we saw that Fulham were playing and went to their match.
“It was against Barnsley! And I remember watching the game and thinking ‘I wish I was playing in the Championship’, so it’s a dream come true!”
The German midfield maestro is back in his homeland, after celebrating promotion in Las Vegas with his teammates.
He has another holiday coming up but says that whilst it’s great to be able to sit back, relax and recharge the batteries, he’s looking forward to testing himself a division higher up.
He told us: “It’s exactly like people say, a second Premier League. There’s no other second division in the world that has the depth and size of clubs in it.
“I’m excited to take on some of the big teams, and the local derbies, like against Leeds United, because I live only a few minutes from the city.
“The lads have already been talking about it, testing ourselves. There’s no reason we can’t go up there and compete. We have quality in this squad, and with the football we play, I think we’ll surprise people.”
Mike ended our interview by thanking the Reds fans for their words of support.
It’s been a fantastic journey for the man who made 42 appearances across all competitions in a season that will live long in the memory of every Reds supporter, and of Mike himself, as he explained.
“The fans have been messaging me, on social media they kept saying I had to sign with Barnsley. It’s all I wanted to do, and I’m glad it’s been sorted out in good time.
“I have felt welcome here from day one. But it isn’t easy to move to a new country and new culture, a different language, away from your friends and family. It helped that the Gaffer wanted me here, that helped me settle.
“And then I became friends with my teammates,” Bähre continued. “We’ve just shared an amazing season, getting promotion, finishing on record points. It’s been incredible.
“When I came last summer people kept bringing up 2016 and that promotion squad, there are photos everywhere of those players. Now I can say I was part of the class of 2019, who went one better!”