1917 was a bit slow for his liking- but Jamie McGrath’s hoping for a better start to life at St Mirren now the Irishman is starting to settle into his new surroundings.
A youth international for Ireland, the former Dundalk man has signed a two-and-a-half year deal in Paisley. He could be set to feature for the Buddies against Broxburn Athletic in the Scottish Cup.
Having spent his full life in Ireland, moving to pastures new is a culture shock. It’s a change in lifestyle, address, banks cards, and all the other usual bits and bobs that come with such a big move.
McGrath has had some downtime watching 1917, the new war epic that swept up prize after prize at the Golden Globes.
It was a bit short and never really got going according to McGrath- but he’s hoping for the complete opposite as a Buddie: “I’m settling in well now, I’ve probably been here about close to a week.
“I’ve met all the boys and they have been very welcoming. It’s been a great start to life here, I’ve never lived away from home. I’m away from friends, family, it’s a small change but one I wanted to embrace. I’m delighted to be over here.
“Even things off the park like setting up bank accounts, looking for places to stay, it’s a little bit different from home. I’m looking forward to experiencing a matchday at St Mirren.”
One thing the Irishman, who can play as an attacking midfielder or a winger, will bring with him is European experience. With Dundalk he got to sample Champions League football and Europa League competition.
It’s experiences he cherishes and McGrath thinks Dundalk’s European efforts raised the League of Ireland’s profile: “I don’t know how many games I’ve played in Europe now. At Dundalk I’ve been fortunate enough to play with some great players and play on the European stage against some very good teams.
“Playing in different countries, different teams, different styles. It was great for me. I was fortunate to play in some great European nights. This season I’ve played Riga FC, a Latvian outfit, and we ran Slovan Bratislava very close.
“We were unlucky against Qarabag. It was brilliant, Dundalk got to the Europa League group stage (in 2016) and I joined the year after. I went to a few of the ties, they did brilliant so they did.
“It got the league a bit more recognition back home. I think people started realising this league is good and teams like Dundalk can challenge in Europe. I was fortunate enough to play in the last three seasons.”