Aberdeen is one step from the big-time for new signing Ronald Hernandez

Ronald Hernandez hopes his Aberdeen switch can be a stepping stone to an even bigger move.

After sitting on the bench at Ibrox on Saturday, Ronald Hernandez hopes to make his Aberdeen debut against St Johnstone tonight. Picture: SNS.

The Venezuelan international joined the Dons on deadline day after Derek McInnes splashed out a six-figure fee to land him from Norwegian club Stabaek.

The 22-year-old started his career with Zamora in his homeland before making the bold decision to swap South America for Scandinavia while still a teenager.

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But having crossed the Atlantic to follow his dream, the full-back believes he is one move closer to the big-time after deciding to make Pittodrie his latest stop.

Hernandez said: “In my life I have pushed to achieve my dreams. It’s not a secret. As players from South America we want to play for the biggest teams in the biggest leagues. I believe in the process because this is the right step for me on to the next one.

“Everything about the move (to Aberdeen) was fast. I was training with my old team in Norway. I spoke to my agent who explained everything to me, step by step.

“I started to read and do research into Aberdeen and then I decided I liked it and would come to Aberdeen to play.

“I need to believe in the process. After the Under-20 World Cup (where he represented Venezuela), I moved to Norway. It was my first destination in Europe.

“I didn’t even speak English when I moved there. In the beginning it was a bit tough. I have this opportunity and I am looking forward to it.”

Hernandez admits he is stepping into the unknown in Scotland – but he is sure he can handle the Ladbrokes Premiership following his Norwegian experience.

The 15-cap defender said: “I honestly don’t know a lot about Scottish football, but I am getting into it.

“I spoke to Fernando De Ornelas, who was a Venezuelan player who played for Celtic. I met him two years ago when I moved to Norway. He told me about 
Scotland.

“I have heard that it is a physical game in Scotland, but it is also physical in Norway.

“I want to enjoy my time here. I have not been to Scotland before, this is my first time. I have only been to London for one night before.

“But it is a long contract and I will take it step by step.”

Hernandez was left on the bench as Aberdeen earned a point at Ibrox on Saturday but hopes to make his Reds bow in front of the Pittodrie faithful tonight.

He said: “I am very excited. We are in the second half of the season.

“It would be nice to make my debut against St Johnstone. I am waiting for the opportunity. The coach has the final decision.”

Meanwhile, Jamie McCart admits tonight’s trip to Pittodrie underlines why he wanted to move to St Johnstone.

The defender sealed a January switch from Inverness after signing a pre-contract with the Perth club.

The 22-year-old left a Caley Thistle team fighting for promotion but realistically through the play-offs with Dundee United well out in front in the Ladbrokes Championship.

McCart felt he had to make the move as quickly as possible. The centre-back, who has faced Celtic and Hearts in the past week and is now set to pit his wits against Aberdeen, said: “That’s why you want to play in the Premiership, going to places like Pittodrie, better atmosphere, bigger crowds, better standard 
of football.

“As soon as St Johnstone came in for me, me and my agent were keen to come. Obviously Inverness were brilliant for me but I couldn’t turn down the chance for Premiership football.

“There’s a lot of ifs and buts in football, anything can happen. Inverness have a real, strong chance of getting promotion. It’s difficult in the play-offs with the amount of games you need to play, it doesn’t make it easy. But I think it was the right time for me.

“It gives you a big boost that the manager wanted to sign me as soon as possible.”