JAKE DOYLE-HAYES has told of his pride after making his Hibernian debut in Europe on Thursday.
The former St Mirren midfielder started as the Easter Road outfit defeated Andorran side Santa Coloma in the second round of qualifying for the Uefa Conference League.
Goals from Jamie Murphy and Daniel Mackay cancelled out a shock opener from the hosts with Jack Ross’ team winning 1-5 on aggregate.
Doyle-Hayes made the switch to the capital in the summer after an impressive season with the Paisley Saints and he was delighted to gain his first appearance for his new club.
“I was delighted to be back out there on the pitch,” he explained. “The game was frustrating, and I picked up a little bit of a hamstring injury, which wasn’t ideal.
“I am delighted to be out there in this jersey and at the end of the day progress to the next round. It was tough conditions.
“It was an unbelievable experience. I have never been here before, so it is unbelievable to play in these games. It is a different pressure playing in a European game, but I am absolutely delighted.
“Making my debut in any game for this club is a very proud moment for me and my family.”
Hibs now head to Fir Park on Sunday where they will get their Scottish Premiership campaign underway against Motherwell.
Asked if he hoped to keep his place in Jack Ross’ starting line-up, Doyle Hayes added: “I am ready to play but at the end of the day it is up to the gaffer. My hope is that I will be playing at the weekend but it is up to the gaffer. We will just need to wait and see what happens.
“It will be unbelievable to have fans back in. Obviously, I was up in Scotland last season but there were no fans so I didn’t get to experience it.
“It will be amazing to have them back and I am just looking forward to getting the season started. Hopefully we can hit the ground running and get off to a positive start.”