Blackburn is home to David Raya, and he will finally get chance to say goodbye to those who made it so, almost five months after his departure from Ewood Park.

The Spaniard arrived in East Lancashire as a 16-year-old prospect and returns tomorrow night as No.1 with in-form Brentford.

Inbetween, he developed in to a fine shot-stopper, chalking up over 100 senior appearances for Rovers and will be set for a warm welcome from the Ewood Park faithful.

On Raya’s mind come kick-off will be helping the Bees, with five wins in their last six matches, to another three points that would help them close the gap on the top six.

Before that will come time to reunite with not just team-mates, but friends, made during his time at the club.

“I came to Blackburn when I was 16 and it became my home. So going back is going to be good and I’m looking forward to it,” Raya told the Lancashire Telegraph.

“My departure was quite quick. I didn’t really get time to say goodbye to anyone.

“So it will be a good time to see everyone.

“I literally don’t read anything but I hope it (the reception) will be good. I know I will be really looking forward to the game. The fans were always good and they supported me.

“It’s going to be an interesting game but for us, the most important thing is the three points.”

Raya’s senior debut came in a Championship win over Ipswich in May 2015, the first of 108 appearances in all.

But it was his displays in the final five matches of the 2016/17 campaign, when Rovers were battling against the drop, that prompted Tony Mowbray to hand the Spaniard the No.1 shirt for the following two seasons.

Raya would miss just the penultimate league match in Rovers’ successful promotion campaign, one he said helped bring the whole club together.

He was a regular last season, featuring in all but five games, but it was that period in the closing months of the relegation campaign that he reflects on as key to his career.

“Those five games that’s what gave me the opportunity to be No.1 for the next two seasons,” he explained.

“Looking back, I think the relegation was the best thing that could have happened for Blackburn.

“It brought everyone together, the team more together, and the promotion and the bond we built was amazing.

“What we set out to do at the start of the season, we achieved.

“From the minute the gaffer walked in, everything changed. He was massively important.

“As a human being he is a really nice man,

“He wanted it to be our dressing room and wanted us to all be together.

“It was an amazing set of lads, I don’t think you would get that anywhere else, and we’re all still friends, even the lads that have left.”

Rovers weren’t without their problems at the back last season, shipping 69 goals in all, with Raya coming under criticism at times for his role in that record.

But he says his focus was always on the team, and his role within it, rather than what was being said on the outside.

He added: “I have always said that the defence, it starts from the front and works back to the goalie.

“You win and you lose as a team, and you attack and defend as a team.

“You will always get some criticism but as long as you’re happy with what you’re doing, you don’t think about criticism.

“You are not always going to be liked, people will disagree or might not like what you do, but I don’t think about the criticism.”

Raya kept his fifth clean sheet of the campaign against Reading on Saturday, with one late save in particular adding to his showreel of stunning stops built up in recent years.

Spanish compatriot Sergi Canos has helped made it a smooth transition to life at Griffin Park, but says the recent run of form helps just as much.

“We are just taking it game by game. It is not easy doing that in this division and know that we need to keep it going,” he said.

“Right from the first day everyone has welcomed me very well. It obviously helped having Sergi here but everyone else has been really good. When things are going well your life is always good as well.”