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Page last updated at 15:23 GMT, Wednesday, 29 April 2009 16:23 UK

Foxes can go straight up - Howard

Steve Howard
I knew I'd come good and shut a few people up

Steve Howard

Striker Steve Howard believes Leicester City could be celebrating back-to-back promotions and the prospect of Premier League football in 12 months.

Howard was named the club's player of the year at the League One champions' end-of-season awards on Tuesday.

And the veteran striker says next season could be another successful campaign - both for him and the club.

"If the manager strengthens in certain areas then we could go straight up," he told BBC Radio Leicester.

"You've got to have competition for places - that's what spurs you on.

"And if we keep playing the football that we're playing then I can't see why not."

Howard scored 14 goals in the Foxes' title-winning season to scoop the player of the season award, while fellow frontman Matty Fryatt collected the players' player award.

Former Derby striker Howard, who turns 33 in the close season, said the award meant a great deal to him after a tough start which saw him getting a bit of stick from the club's fans.

"You have to believe in yourself," Howard said. "The gaffer believed in me and the lads believed in me.

"I thought I was playing well but not scoring goals but I stuck at it and knew I'd come good and shut a few people up."

And Howard said the team spirit played a massive part in their achievements this season.

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"The lads are all together that's why we've been successful," he explained.

"You cannot be at the top of the league with bad eggs in your side - we're a close unit."

Skipper Matt Oakley won the goal of the season award for his strike against Cheltenham Town in March.



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