Defender Alex Iacovitti is relishing his long-awaited bow in Scottish football ahead of Ross County’s Premiership opener against Motherwell on Monday.
Iacovitti was born in Nottingham and has spent his entire career in England, however, his Edinburgh-born mother makes him eligible for Scotland and he has donned the dark blue up to under-21 level.
The 22-year-old has long harboured the ambition to play north of the border and, after finalising a move from Oldham Athletic earlier this summer, is aiming to showcase his ability in the Premiership.
Iacovitti said: “I have always wanted to play in the Scottish Premiership. That’s why as soon as I spoke to the manager (Stuart Kettlewell) I had only one thought in my head – and that was to come here.”
Iacovitti made 30 appearances for English League Two club Oldham last season, having previously come through the youth ranks at hometown club Nottingham Forest.
Although Scottish games will initially be played behind closed doors due to coronavirus, the defender feels the opportunity to play at big stadiums once crowds are restored was a major draw.
Iacovitti said: “This is a big step up for me. Hopefully it’s one I can take. Playing in the Premiership you are right under people’s noses compared to when you are in League One or League Two.
“But if you’re here, doing well in big games against the likes of Celtic, Rangers and Aberdeen, those are the big games where I want to be showing everyone what I can do.
“As a player you want play at the highest level possible, it doesn’t matter how old you are.”
Iacovitti is determined to make the most of the fresh challenge presented to him by Staggies manager Kettlewell.
He added: “I had a few offers in England, but when County came in it was interesting because it wasn’t something I expected.
“It was seven-and-a-half hours away, but once I got speaking to the manager I was impressed by the ambitions they have. He sold it to me straight away.
“Everything about coming up here – the setup and the facilities – means I can focus on football and really get going at a massive stage in my career.”