HE may have only been an Argyle player a few short weeks, but, by his own admission, Jose Baxter is settling into live in Devon tremendously well.
The former Everton and Sheffield United player, who joined Argyle on an initial six-month deal a few days before the season began, has already noted the warmth of the Green Army and the city of Plymouth.
“I’m loving it, love the place, love the people, love the fans, love the club,” said Baxter. “I really have taken to it like a duck to water. I’m loving it, and hopefully it’s for longer.”
The versatile midfielder scored his first goal as a Pilgrim during the Greens 4-2 Carabao Cup defeat against Reading on Tuesday night, and made a point to celebrate vociferously with the fans who have made him feel so very welcome on the south coast.
“As soon as I signed, after the first time I came on, I called my dad and said the reception was great,” said Baxter. “It was really warming for me, I loved it. That’s why, when I score goals like that, I like to give something back and thank them for it.”
There were over 8,000 fans at Home Park to witness Baxter’s first goal in Green, which is remarkable in isolation, before you even consider that it was the fifth game at Home Park in just 17 days. According to Jose, that’s not lost on the players.
“Unbelievable, it really is. It’s something we think about. People maybe think we turn up and take these things for granted, but we really don’t.
“We speak about it a lot; Tuesday night, the Tuesday before, Salford, even the Orient game they turned out in their numbers. It’s unheard of, it’s unseen at this level, especially on a Tuesday night. It’s amazing. Once the new stand is up and we’re in and amongst it, this place is going to be rocking.”
It’s not just Jose, though, who is enjoying a new lease of life in Plymouth, and he has noticed a real positive atmosphere around the city during his down-time. Much of it, he believes, can be attributed to the Ryan Lowe effect, and the wider project being undertaken within the ever-changing footprint of Home Park.
“You go for a coffee around town, and it feels like the whole place has got a buzz about it,” said Jose. “That’s what the gaffer and his staff have brought. Hopefully we can keep continue getting the three points on a Saturday and bring the buzz even more – fill that extra stand up when it’s open.”