As far as first games can go, it could have hardly gone better for Leo Hjelde.
Inside the first minute of his Millers bow against Blackburn Rovers, he’d collected possession just inside his own half, drove forward to deliver a teasing ball and had his hand in the opening goal of the game.
The Leeds United loanee had joined just two days earlier on loan from Leeds United until the end of the 2022/23 campaign and impressed in his first outing, a 4-0 triumph over promotion chasing Blackburn Rovers.
“It was a really enjoyable debut for me,” Hjelde told www.themillers.co.uk.
“I think it’s fair to say that we really hit the ground running with a goal inside the opening minute!
“We can’t really complain with that and I think it gave us all a big boost of confidence right from the off. After that, we really took control of the game.
“I’ve played at left-back before and I do enjoy that position. I do like the left sided centre-back role, too, but I’m more than happy to a job anywhere on the pitch for the team.
“The manager and the coaching staff had been speaking to me prior to the game about the importance of putting early crosses into the box and unsettling their defence, so it was fantastic to see that rewarded.
“I was just trying to do my job – what they’d told me to do – thankfully, the ball bounced nicely towards Haks, who finished it incredibly well.”
The Norwegian defender had quite the test for his first game and passed it with flying colours against one of the league’s fancied sides.
On Saturday, the Millers come up against another of them in the shape of Watford, a team relegated from the Premier League last season and looking for an immediate return.
The 19-year-old stressed that he’s looking forward to the challenge of testing himself against the league’s best.
“The boys and the rest of the staff have been fantastic with me, it feels like I’ve known everyone for a really long time, which has made me feel extremely welcome.
“It was great for us to get a result against a good team like Blackburn and the challenges just keep on coming, with Watford up next.
“This is why I wanted to go out and get games, to test myself against the best teams and players in the league. I’m really looking forward to it.”