Dundee may have important Betfred Cup business in Peterhead tomorrow night but Elton Ngwatala admits he is already looking forward to the start of Premiership action and the chance to play in front of big crowds against the likes of Celtic and Rangers.
The 25-year-old was Dens boss Neil McCann’s first signing of the summer, putting pen to paper on a two-year deal in May after leaving Conference side Kidderminster Harriers.
Ngwatala was used to playing in front of crowds of around 1,500 down south and he cannot wait to experience the atmosphere at the likes of Parkhead and Ibrox.
He said: “I watched a few games before coming up – the big ones involving Celtic and Rangers.
“I hadn’t seen much of Dundee but this is a good league. You can play good football and improve as a player.
“If you get lucky, you can also go higher.
“It’s a good level. I was playing in the Conference North and I wanted to move up.
“When Dundee came in for me, I said ‘Yes, I will come’.
“I wanted to step up and play against teams likes Celtic, Rangers and Hibs.
“It’s a better standard and the crowds are bigger. Down south, the average crowd is 1,500, sometimes more.
“But in Scotland, there will be a lot of games with good atmospheres.”
The French midfielder made his competitive home debut for Dundee on Sunday in the Betfred Cup tie against Dunfermline.
The Pars raced into an early lead through Jackson Longridge – an advantage they held onto for the rest of the game – although Ngwatala came agonisingly close to equalising for the Dark Blues in the second half when he saw a shot from the edge of the Dunfermline box cannon off the crossbar.
Now, following the defeat he is determined there will be a big response at Balmoor tomorrow night.
Ngwatala added: “We lost the game on Sunday and we have to bounce back on Wednesday.
“We should have done more against Dunfermline and it was a disappointing performance.
“When I got the ball, I took the shot and I thought to myself, ‘That’s in’.
“I don’t know how the keeper managed to touch it on to the bar.
“It was a tough day but we have to rest now and think about Wednesday, because we need to win.
“The pitch was a bit sticky but that’s not a reason for us losing the game.
“Both teams need to play on the pitch so we should have done more.
“The weather was tough but it doesn’t matter what kind of game it is – we should be looking to win.
“It doesn’t make any difference what competition we are playing in.
“I have really enjoyed my time at Dundee so far and I think there is more to come.
“I need to get fitter and stronger and keep progressing.
“It is a bit different to what I am used to in England. It’s better players and better pitches.
“But that’s good for me as I want to step up my level. I feel I can improve a lot.”