Louis Longridge is back at Falkirk and for some it feels as though he has never been away.
He endeared himself to the fans with a stunning performance in the 6-1 dismantling of Dundee United, when he scored a double and was involved in most of the goals, during his first spell with the club back in 2017-18.
And it was that type of display as to why there is excitement at his return this week after he penned a deal until January.
And Longridge is equally thrilled to be back at the Bairns.
He told the Falkirk Herald: “I’m delighted as I know a lot of the staff, and players having played against them or with them. I’ve had a good relationship with a number of people at the club and that was a big factor in my decision to come back, it’s a family club and everybody is close and pushing in the one direction.
“I did so well last time and I feel at home here.
“I was in the Championship last year and got a good amount of goals and assists and I’m just looking to do the exact same. It’s going to be tough with teams sitting in but it’s going to be down to players like me to penetrate teams and be the difference.”
Some fans felt the 28-year-old should have never left the club and after moving to rivals Dunfermline it was a bitter pill to swallow. So why did he leave?
Longridge said: “It was quite complicated there were various things that broke down. I was pushing to get it to happen but for whatever reason it didn’t.
“We left on good terms and I still kept in contact with a lot of people at the club and class them as friends as well.
“When I was here I did well and gave my all. I never left on bad terms and understand I went to their rivals – maybe certain fans wouldn’t be happy with it – but I made that decision at the time for my career.”
Longridge left the Pars in May. He has since been training with Scottish Premiership side St Mirren and has had a few Championship clubs interested in his signature. Falkirk too left notice of their intentions and after a few weeks of chasing him they finally got their man.
He said: “There’s been a couple of deals that have fallen through at the last minute then Monday evening I got a call from Falkirk. The timing as well I need to get back playing, get game time and so I jumped at the opportunity.
“I know the manager, I played under him at Raith and I know the staff. It makes it easier to settle in. I’ve spoke to the staff and they’ve said it feels as though I’ve never been away.
“It’s nice to see that everyone’s making you feel so welcome. I’m happy that I’ve been able to keep that relationship with them since the day I left.”
Longridge admits the Dundee United game was amongst his highlights but there are many reasons as to why he enjoys being at Falkirk.
He said: “I did a lot of in the community and representing Falkirk, visiting hospitals that stuff means a lot as well. Every time I’m asked I’d never turn that down. I grew up as a Celtic fan and when you meet the players you get that wee buzz. It’s important to me, my family, the way I have been brought up to go and do these things to try and give a wee bit back because it doesn’t take a lot to make somebody’s day or make somebody smile.
“I had a great time here last time and that’s the reason why I had no hesitation in rejoining.
On the park too Longridge is hoping to pick up where he left off and there are certainly a few familiar faces amongst his new team-mates.
He said: “Aidan Connolly is my one of my best mates in football I know him from my Raith days so he has been filling me in with the character of the boys. But I don’t think there’s a face I don’t know in the dressing room.
“It’s a good changing room there’s that pressure and expectancy because of the squad the manager has built here, fans expect you to beat teams and it’s up to us to thrive on that pressure and deliver.
“There’s no better feeling for me than the fans being there at the stadium and scoring and hearing them celebrating and chanting your name.
“The deal is until January, I think that suits both parties. I’m not thinking too far ahead. At the moment I’m just concentrating on Dumbarton on Saturday. We need to get the three points.
“I think if we get the first goal it is vital and we get three or four, but it’s about breaking teams down if they get that one opportunity then they might score and you can see a game you’ve dominated you could we end up losing.
“Training’s been good, I’m enjoying my first week and I’m excited to get going.”