18 December 2021
It’s fair to say Juan Martin Gonzalez Samso is enjoying life in the fast lane at London Irish, following his recent arrival on these shores.
Having featured for Los Pumas in the Autumn International fixtures, he made his debut from the bench against Newcastle Falcons earlier this month, before making his first start in last weekend’s European Challenge Cup victory against Pau.
“I am enjoying it here,” he said.
“It’s been a nice start to my time at London Irish, with the team winning games.
“Everyone has been really welcoming to myself and Lucio – it’s one big family here.”
There’s no doubt that the presence of his three fellow Argentines – Agustin Creevy, Facundo Gigena, Lucio Cinti Luna – has played a crucial role during his early days with the Club.
The ‘Four Amigos’ are regularly seen socialising ‘out of office’ hours and Juan credits that with how quickly he has settled in London.
“It’s been amazing to be honest,” he said.
“Everyone has really helped me to settle into the Club, but there’s no doubt that having those three here has really helped.
“We train together, we play together and we socialise together – and that is really important as we look to grow as a Club.”
Juan’s move to London Irish in November completed quite a whirlwind year for the 21 year-old.
Formerly of Jaguares, he made his international debut for Argentina earlier this year – coming off the bench to score a try against Romania – and has since gone on to feature against Australia and New Zealand, amongst others, for his country.
Now, he’s playing in the famous green of London Irish – capping a memorable 12 months or so for the highly-rated back row.
“It’s been an incredible year to be honest,” he said.
“Playing for your country is the ultimate honour and something that will always mean so much to me.
“I really enjoyed my time with the national team and then, when the opportunity came up to join London Irish, it just felt like the right time.”
He added: “London Irish is a fantastic Club with a big history and everyone is pulling together to continue to build something here.
“There’s a good mix of players – some at the start of their careers and others who are so experienced, having played many games for club and country.
“It’s a nice group to be part of.”