Sam McClelland is relishing the “spotlight” of playing in Scotland’s top flight after signing a two-year deal with St Johnstone.
The 21-year-old Northern Irish defender – capped once by his country – joins the Perth club having spent the majority of his career to date in Chelsea’s youth system.
McClelland went out on loan last season to Sky Bet League Two side Barrow, where he made 30 appearances.
“I’m so happy to be here and get the deal over the line,” the defender told Saints’ website after the transfer was finalised on Thursday. “I first heard about a potential move around a week or so ago and I was immediately interested in coming here.
“I’m really looking forward to getting started.
“The manager was the first to make contact with me and I liked what I heard, he made it a really easy sell for me.
“It’s a brilliant opportunity to come up to Scotland.
“There’s a real spotlight with so many big games in the Premiership that I’m looking forward to already.
“I’m here to improve myself but also try be a part of a successful St Johnstone team.
“I like defending but I also feel I’m comfortable on the ball as well. I’m here to defend, keep clean sheets and get wins for the team.”
McClelland becomes Saints’ third summer signing following the arrivals of Dimitar Mitov and Luke Jephcott. The Perth side are also close to securing the signature of former Southampton and Liverpool defender Oludare Olufunwa.