Michael Essien is enjoying playing in Spain more than he did in England.
Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho jumped at the chance to bring his old favourite Essien on loan to the Bernabeu, after the Ghanaian midfielder found chances hard to come by at Chelsea.
And while it may not have been the best La Liga season for Los Blancos so far, Essien says he is certainly having “more fun” in La Liga than he did in the Premier League.
The reason Essien is enjoying himself so much is Spanish football’s emphasis on the technical aspects of the game, rather than England’s enduring propensity for the physical aspects of football.
"The English competition is very physical," Essien said.
"From what I have seen so far in La Liga, teams want to play in a way that is based more on ball movement. This makes it more fun to play.
“In England some teams do not focus on playing, but more on the physical contact. That is where I see the big difference."
30-year-old Essien has made 23 appearances for Los Blancos so far, and has been swept up by the club’s desire to win their tenth European Cup.
Real play Manchester United in the last-16 of the Champions League next week, and Essien is excited by the prospect of coming up against a side he knows so well, on the European stage.
And he says it would be a “dream” to help the reigning Spanish champions achieve ‘La Decima.’
"To win the Champions League would be a fantastic achievement for me and for the club," he said.
"As a player you dream about winning it. We will give our all and see if we can achieve that."