LUKE Hyam is relishing his unfamiliar role as a new boy with Southend United.

Hyam signed for the Shrimpers after 15 years with Ipswich Town.

But the midfielder, who started the 1-1 draw against Aberdeen yesterday, is already enjoying being with Blues.

“This is all new to me,” said Hyam, 26.

“I had a month on loan at Rotherham once but this is different meeting a whole new group after signing permanently.

“I didn’t know anyone coming here but I can’t thank them enough for welcoming me into the team and I’ve been really enjoying it.

“It was nerve-wracking joining a new team but the lads have been different class and the manager and his staff have been very good too.

“It’s made it a lot easier to settle and mix in with the group.”

Hyam missed out on Saturday’s 5-0 win at Great Wakering Rovers with a slight knock.

But he was fit enough to figure for the first time yesterday in testing conditions.

“It was hot to say the least but it was a good test,” said Hyam.

“It was nice to get 45 minutes under our belts and it was nice to integrate everyone into the team too.”

Hyam started the clash in Spain and appeared to be suffering with a knee problem.

But the midfielder played down the injury concern.

“It’s part and parcel of things and you’re always going to get knocks and bruises during pre-season,” said Hyam.

“It’s one of those times when you’re putting 100 per cent in to get your fitness levels back up and getting your body used to it all again.

“But it was good to be out there and I’m looking forward to the season ahead.

“I want to play regularly and help us finish in the top six.”