IT WAS while enjoying the tastes of Barcelona that Josh Coley’s mobile rang with the promise of good news.

On the other end of the line was his agent, who was to tell the 20-year-old that his time in the city that is home to Lionel Messi and company was to be swapped for the Auld Grey Toon.

And he couldn’t have been happier about it – even if it meant dashing across much of England, and doing his homework before arriving at his new destination.

Coley last month became the 10th new arrival at East End this summer after agreeing a season-long loan deal from Premier League newcomers Norwich City, who he joined last summer from non-league Hitchin Town after impressing during a pre-season trial.

He was one of eight players in the Canaries’ academy to sign a new one-year deal in February, having become a regular in their under-23 side, but was delighted to say hola to a new challenge with the Athletic.

“I was told in January that there was a possibility of me going on loan, and then I was told again that I was put on the loans list by Norwich in April/May,” he explained.

“I was halfway through my Barcelona holiday and then I got told I was coming to Scotland!

“I was halfway through eating tapas at a bar and my agent called me and said, ‘Josh, I’ve got some good news’.

“I had said to him that I wanted to come to Scotland because the Scottish Championship and the Scottish Premiership looked like such good places for young players to label themselves so other people can see.

“When he said you’re going to Scotland, I was excited, but he said you’ve got to be there on Friday – but my flight back was on Friday!

“He just called the club and the gaffer was so nice about it. He basically just said OK, no worries, just come in on Sunday, so I didn’t have to cut it (the holiday) short, luckily, because it would have cost me a fortune to book and get back!

“The flights were to Manchester but all my stuff was either in North London or Norwich. So I got back, slept until 12 o’clock, travelled from North London to Norwich to get my stuff, from Norwich to York (where mum Allison lives), stayed that night, and then the next morning went from York to Scotland.

“I must have done about 12-15 hours of driving within those two days!”

Coley continued: “I had to do some research on the club to be fair. Obviously I’d heard of a few clubs, your Premiership ones like your Aberdeens, Celtic and Rangers and stuff, but the Championship I had to do my research to see what the club did last year, and what the players are like.

“I pass to Pates (Paul Paton) as much as I can and whenever he asks for it because I don’t want him to scream at me!

“All the boys have made it really easy to settle in and the club’s made it easy to move into the apartment and stuff, so everything’s just been about playing football since I’ve been here.

“All the background stuff’s been done for me so I’m enjoying it a lot.

“It’s good to be here. I wanted a loan for a while because 23s football, after you’ve played it for a while, you want to get back to men’s football; I’d already played it before in non-league.”

Coley, who can play on either flank, moved to Hitchin, Hertfordshire, after completing his GCSEs and signed with the local team.

But a loan move to Baldock Town during season 2017/18, where he scored 21 goals to help them win promotion, caught the eye of Norwich, who made their move last summer.

Coley believes there are similarities between his parent and loan clubs, adding: “It’s very similar to Norwich in the sense that it’s a massive family club.

“Everyone’s so nice around here – the staff, the people in the town – and if you’ve got people coming up to you and making you feel welcome, it makes the whole process so much easier. That made me feel like at home again.”