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Thursday 18 September 2014

Aiden McGeady: The Russian novelty had worn off

Published 18/01/2014 | 13:19

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Aiden
Aiden McGeady was paraded at Goodison Park before Everton's game with Norwich

New Everton signing Aiden McGeady admits when the novelty of living in Russia wore off he immediately set his sights on a move to the Barclays Premier League.

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The 27-year-old Republic of Ireland international joined the Toffees last week from Spartak Moscow after signing a four-and-a-half-year deal.

McGeady left Celtic for a lucrative move to Moscow in 2010 but said - having experienced away games in Siberia - after two years out there he was ready for a return to Britain.

The winger admits he found plenty of difficulties living in Russia but is looking forward to focusing on a new chapter in his career.

"I could probably write a book on it the amount of things there were," he said.

"(Most difficult was) probably trying to adapt to life over there.

"It is not like moving here, where everything is easier to do. Things are that little bit... probably not backwards, but a lot of it is like 20 years ago.

"The first couple of years were great but after that the novelty wore off a little bit and it was a difficult place to live with a family, it's not the easiest place to bring up children.

"It is a totally different way of life and the way they approach football over there is like night and day compared to here.

"It was probably just too big a change."

McGeady was linked with Wigan last season when Everton manager Roberto Martinez was still in charge but a deal failed to materialise.

However, with his contract due to expire this summer the Spaniard rescued him from training with Spartak's youth team, where he had been banished after refusing to sign an extension.

"Towards the end I was getting a bit frustrated but I never had any falling-out with the manager," he added.

"In the end it was just a case of they were getting tired of me not re-signing so I ended up getting put in the youth team, which was a good experience.

"But I can't have any complaints, it was a great life experience and a real eye-opener.

"The standard of the top teams was pretty good as they have a lot of money and Zenit went and spent 50million euros on Hulk and 40million euros on Axel Witsel.

"It was a difficult league. Every away game was a flight. I've actually been to Siberia - five and a half hours on a flight for an away game."

McGeady, who is in the squad for Monday's trip to West Brom, is now looking forward to reacquainting himself with some home comforts.

"It has taken a while to get into the Premier League," he said.

"Whenever I was linked with (English) teams there was nothing I could do, it was down to the club (Spartak) and when you are under contract to a team like that they don't really bother that much about money.

"They want silly money for you so it kind of puts you out of move but I was under contract any way and kind of happy.

"I wasn't too fussed but obviously when I got to the last year of my contract I was getting a bit agitated. Everything seems to have worked out for the best."

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