Paul Dummett says it was "weird" hearing his name chanted at St James's Park – as he's used to fans telling him he's "s***e".
Dummett has been outstanding since returning from injury late last year.
The defender has long divided opinion among supporters, though his performance this season have won many more fans over.
Dummett's name was sung when Southampton visited St James's Park earlier this month.
“It was weird,” Dummett told The Times. “Normally people shout ‘Dummett, you’re shite'."
Dummett – who has made 134 career appearances for his hometown club – has improved under United manager Rafa Benitez.
“When we were first linked with the manager, I remember thinking ‘he’s not going to come here', said the 25-year-old.
"It was a reminder of how big this club is. We’re lucky to have him. Hopefully, we can stay up, he’ll stay and we progress. Because the fans love him so much, it’s made it easier for us. There’s pressure, but it’s a good environment.
"I wouldn’t say a bad word about him. He’s been nice about me, which is great when he’s achieved so much and worked with so many fantastic players.
"He always says he wants to strengthen, bring in another left-back. I don’t have a problem with that. I want to be pushed.”