Jelavic has fond memories of his time at Goodison Park.
Former Everton striker Nikica Jelavic has written a letter to Toffees fans thanking them for their support during his two years at Goodison Park.
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The Croatian, 28, joined Hull City on Wednesday in a three-and-a-half year deal but stressed he will always have fond memories of his spell on Merseyside.
Jelavic made a blistering start to his Everton career, bagging 11 goals in just 16 appearances after arriving from Rangers in January 2012 – including the winner on his debut against Tottenham.
But the poacher’s goals quickly dried up the following season, with then-boss David Moyes preferring Victor Anichebe up front. Jelavic’s exile continued until Moyes’ successor Roberto Martinez, who has favoured Chelsea loanee Romelu Lukaku as a lone striker this term.
Jelavic has now joined the Tigers to boost his chances of featuring for Croatia at next summer’s World Cup but thanked Everton fans profusely and insisted they saw ‘the real Nikica Jelavic’ during his early goal-scoring spate.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Everton fans from the bottom of my heart for their support,” he wrote [Sky Sports].
“They gave me their backing from day one and never stopped believing in me, which is something I will always remember.
“I believe the scoring run which I went on during those first six months [scoring 11 times in 16 appearances] is the real Nikica Jelavic and I’m pleased the Evertonians were able to see and appreciate what I’m really about.
“Everton supporters have a special way of making you feel like one of them, and even when I was not in the team in more recent times I always felt they were behind me.
“Playing for Croatia is something I also take huge pride in and with a World Cup on the horizon I was in the situation of needing to play more games to make sure I remain in Niko Kovac’s thoughts.
“Unfortunately that wasn’t happening at Everton, and Roberto Martinez was very honest and up front with me about his thinking.
“When I went to meet Steve Bruce I realised it was the right move to a club with the potential to become a top Premier League outfit. Steve’s ambition was clear, as was his desire to see me playing and scoring goals.
“While I’m sad to wave farewell to Everton and all my friends; it is time for my next challenge.
“I’m only pleased that I was able to say goodbye with two goals in the FA Cup win against QPR, and share some special celebrations with them one last time.
“I hope to be celebrating many more goals in future, and I’m excited to get going at my new club. But you can guarantee the Toffees will remain in my heart. I hope they can go on to fulfil their ambitions this season and I will always look out for them.
“Thank you and good luck.”