Jack Butland believes that signing for Crystal Palace relieved a lot of stress after enduring a tough time towards the end of his spell at Stoke City.
Butland joined the Eagles in October 2020 and has remained an understudy to Vicente Guaita for the majority of his time at Selhurst Park.
Butland has featured in the Premier League six times this season and been Palace’s first choice FA Cup goalkeeper under Patrick Vieira.
The 28-year-old made a crucial save to deny Wout Weghorst handing Burnley the lead in the 57th minute at Selhurst Park on Saturday.
Butland, who has been capped by England nine times, struggled to find form in the Championship with Stoke City following their relegation from the Premier League in 2018.
“I am loving it,” said Butland when asked whether playing for the South Londoners felt like home.
“I knew I had to be patient because the goalkeeper ahead of me has been doing well, and chances don’t just get given out whether you deserve them or not.
“You have to bide your time, and I feel I have done that. I guess I am being rewarded with some opportunities at the minute and just doing my best to take them.
“The minute I came to Palace, it lifted a lot of stress. I did immediately feel at home because I knew a lot of players here – I knew the management and goalie coach.
“There were a lot of people I knew, so I settled in really quick and felt back to my best really quick.
“I do certainly feel I am back at my best, and now I am getting the chances to show people that.”
Palace take on Butland’s former club Stoke, who are 15th in the Championship, in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Tuesday evening.
“I am looking forward to it – it will be great,” said the Palace shotstopper. “It will be great to play against Stoke and see some ex-team-mates and staff members I spent a long time with.
“We are looking to go on a cup run and keep that going. I want us to win, but it will be good from a personal note to see some old faces.”
With the Eagles only one game away from the semi-final, should they bypass the Potters on Tuesday night, speaking about the opportunity to take the club to Wembley, Butland said: “That would be great. I had a couple of semi-finals with Stoke a few years back – beating Chelsea along the way, so I do know what that feeling is like to do well in a cup competition.
“That is certainly what we are planning to do here. It is a really important game, one that, despite what we are trying to achieve in the Premier League, we are all desperate to win. I am sure we will be strong.
“We will get our recovery in and be ready. We all know the FA Cup is special. We are looking forward to it and hopefully getting a win to put ourselves in the hat for the next round.”