Tam Courts is grateful for the backing Dundee United fans have given his side this season.
That’s why the Tangerines gaffer insists he’ll never stop ‘lobbying’ to have supporters in stadiums.
Restrictions on crowd numbers are set to be lifted by the Scottish Government on January 17 – in time for the resumption of Premiership action on January 18.
United face St Mirren at Tannadice that night – and fans will be there in their thousands.
For Courts, that is a huge bonus for the second half of the season.
“It is brilliant news that we can get back to full stadiums,” he said.
“It almost felt like a huge step backwards that last game before the break where there were only 500 fans allowed in.
“It was even more difficult because we are on the same island and we had to watch the darts and English football, a few hundred miles down the road, and they are being played in front of full capacity crowds.
“I know it is difficult for the government as well, in terms of having to make these difficult leadership decisions in the midst of a long-term pandemic.
“The important thing for us is that we keep lobbying for the fans and we keep our supporters in our stadiums, as long as it is safe for them to do so.
“It is great news that we all have our fans back and we know the United supporters will be there at a crucial time in the season.”
United started the campaign brightly but their form fell away before Christmas amid mounting injury and illness issues.
Now, after a well-earned break, Courts is confident fans will see a rejuvenated side.
He said: “We have commented a lot about this internally because a lot of the games we have played felt like a cup final.
“I think it was because we had a really strong start to the season. We got the fans on board and engaged with what we are doing.
“We are now returning over our injuries and our Covid situations, with better availability and numbers in terms of our squad.
“Hopefully, that can help us make an impact on the pitch and we can start to pick up more points.”
On teen star Kerr Smith, who looks set to join Aston Villa after the clubs agreed a deal worth up to £2 million, Courts offered: “I believe a bid has been accepted for Kerr Smith.
“I don’t think the deal is completed yet but it is now in the latter stages and we will see what happens over the next couple of days.”