Defender is enjoying his new life at the Fife

Julen Etxabeguren cruised through his East Fife debut.
Julen Etxabeguren cruised through his East Fife debut.

Julen Etxabeguren says he can’t wait to get his teeth into the Scottish game after swapping the Champions League for League Two .

The 23-year-old is a graduate of the Real Sociedad youth system but, following his release from the club, decided to turn his back on full-time football and arrived in Scotland to study engineering at the University of Edinburgh.

On arriving in Scotland the defender was recommended to Fife boss Gary Naysmith by agent Allan Preston and made his debut for the Methil side in Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Queen’s Park.

“I was with Real Sociedad for 13 years and part of the 25 man squad last season for the Champions League,” said Etxabeguren.

“But they promised me a lot of things which didn’t happen so I decided that the best thing would be for a change of atmosphere and come to another country.

“When I arrived in Scotland I spoke with Allan Preston and he got in touch with the gaffer.

“I spoke with him and wanted to get training and playing as soon as possible and I felt this was the best place to start to do it.

“I like being here - the atmosphere amongst the lads is great and I think it’s going to be a successful year for us.”

Etxabeguren felt Saturday’s draw with the Spiders was a fair result.

He said: “It was a good game for us and defensively we did some good work.

“The game was more physical from what I’ve played in before and the play was a lot tighter.

“But it was similar in ways as well - it’s still just 11 v 11.”

The defender, who has been training at Bayview since October, was given a rude awakening to Bayview as freezing swirling winds swept around the park.

“I come from the Basque country where there is regular rain but nothing so cold as it was during the game,” he said.