Maikel Kieftenbeld confirmed himself to be as honest and committed off the pitch as he is on it as he clarified the circumstances of his botched move to Derby County and expressed a genuine concern that the Birmingham City fans might resent him for it.
He need not have worried, yesterday’s explanation has been as warmly received as his return to the Blues first team.
After six matches in the stands and having been told he was surplus to requirements - as late as transfer deadline day - Kieftenbeld described his welcome before the Cardiff City match as ‘really special’.
What the supporters think clearly matters to the 27-year-old and in an era when the football industry increasingly resembles a circus with players gliding between clubs, that’s vitally important.
Finding the right type of person becomes more important than finding the right kind of player. You can build something lasting around good people.
Steve Cotterill, who has picked him in every one of his five games has seen that and the Dutchman’s restoration reflects well on the Birmingham manager - and poorly on Harry Redknapp, who perhaps made the error of focusing too much on what Kieftenbeld doesn’t do as well as what he does.
There was always going to be a place in the Birmingham squad for a player of Kieftenbeld’s energy, industry and sheer professionalism. To think otherwise is to misunderstand the club.
What remains now is for Kieftenbeld’s future to be clarified. The contract he signed when he moved from Groningen in July 2015 expires next summer.
Like anyone he appears to crave stability, a new deal would offer him that.
Should Birmingham City hand Maikel Kieftenbeld a new contract before his current deal expires in the summer?
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For the money Birmingham paid, approximately £180,000, they have received 97 appearances and five goals in just over two years.
If he remains in the team unchanged he will bring up his century at Sheffield United on Saturday week.
That service deserves recognition, it would reward the player himself and demonstrate the owners also value the qualities that are important to their fanbase.