Hibernian forward Martin Boyle will never regret his move to Saudi Arabia but he is delighted to be back at the place he calls home and just wants to “enjoy football” again.
The 29-year-old returned to Easter Road on a three-year deal earlier this month after a seven-month spell at Saudi Arabian side Al Faisaly.
While he is delighted Hibs “made a big play” to bring him back to Edinburgh, he is still glad he travelled to the Middle East to try something different.
“I enjoyed my time there, I played Champions League and that was some experience as well,” he told Sky Sports.
“It’s different, they’ve got VAR over there and I think there are a lot more technical players, there aren’t as many rash challenges flying in.
“It’s just a different culture. It’s hotter weather, I was training at night, staying up through the night and different eating habits.
“It’s home sweet home here, you enjoy what you’re used to and thankfully I’m back.”
Boyle made an immediate impact as he began his second spell at Hibs, scoring a 95th-minute equaliser against Hearts in the Edinburgh derby.
“I think that’s the first game that I’ve woken up and been a bit nervous for because I didn’t know where I was at in terms of fitness,” said the Australia international.
“I hadn’t really had match sharpness and played a game in over a month, but the games normally take care of themselves.
“The adrenaline, the atmosphere was electric and I was itching to come on and those moments don’t come around often.
“It’s definitely a moment I’ll remember for a long time.”
Boyle is now hoping his experience can help Hibernian reclaim their place in the top half of the Scottish Premiership after a disappointing campaign saw them finish eighth last season.
“Obviously the expectation levels will be high and rightly so,” he added.
“I just need to keep working hard, performing and helping team-mates. It’s quite a young squad so I’ll need to help them along the way.
“I’d say I’m pretty fit. I had a lengthy time off, but I looked after myself when I was away and obviously I’ve come back and managed to make an impact in my first game.
Johnson: We need some experience
Hibs manager Lee Johnson told Sky Sports he is not finished in the transfer window as he looks to add some experience to his young squad.
“Ideally I would like to add a couple if I’m honest with you,” he said. “We are a young side. I think probably the youngest starting 11 in the first two of three games in the SPFL.
“And that comes with huge potential but, of course, at times you just want that ‘daddy’ or the experience dotting around. We’ve got quite a few injured at the moment, but when those players come back it will be like new signings.
“I think for where we are as a football club, we’re in a good place. We’ve just got to trust it and keep believing. Big games and big performances, like we can produce on Saturday, gives us every opportunity to keep building that momentum.”