sport news Feeling the love: Finn Russell is finding his feet in Paris

It's one o'clock in sun-kissed Paris and Scotland and Racing 92 stand-off Finn Russell is having a coffee in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower. Tempted to the French capital on a reputed £800,000 a year - making him the highest-paid player in Scottish rugby history - he is clearly settling in well to his new glamorous surroundings.

'This is a great city,' said a smiling Russell, who has been in Paris for nearly two months. 'It's been good here and it's been hot. High 20s, low 30s pretty much every day.

'I don't think I'm used to it yet, but I do expect the sun now when I get up, which I didn't in Glasgow.

'You stick your shorts and t-shirt on in the morning and that's you for the day.'

Finn Russell has moved to Racing 92 and is finding his feet in the French capital

Finn Russell has moved to Racing 92 and is finding his feet in the French capital

The fly-half sat down with Sportsmail to discuss how he has been getting on since his switch

The fly-half sat down with Sportsmail to discuss how he has been getting on since his switch

Relaxed as he sits with his sister Jessie and girlfriend Emma Canning in the Castel Café on Avenue de Suffren less than a hundred yards from the city's most famous landmark, he is loving life since making the high-profile move from Glasgow Warriors to the star-studded Racing 92.

Signed as a direct replacement for legendary All Black fly-half Dan Carter may be daunting to some - but not to Russell, who makes his home debut for the Paris club against Greig Laidlaw's Clermont Auvergne in the French capital on Sunday afternoon.

'I don't see it as daunting coming here,' said Russell. 'I'll play my rugby but I am not coming here to compare myself to Dan Carter. That is something the fans might do, but it is not my job to do that.'

His home debut is much anticipated by Racing 92 fans after his man-of-the-match competitive debut in the Top14 away win over Toulon last weekend.

'This is a great city,' said a smiling Russell, who has been in Paris for nearly two months

'This is a great city,' said a smiling Russell, who has been in Paris for nearly two months

He will make his home debut against Greig Laidlaw's Clermont Auvergne on Sunday afternoon

He will make his home debut against Greig Laidlaw's Clermont Auvergne on Sunday afternoon

It was a vintage display from Russell, who went over for two tries in a personal total of 20 points.

How he is settling in to his new surroundings clearly interests Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend, who met with him in the city last Wednesday and will be a very interested spectator in the Paris La Defense Arena today.

'Gregor was over this week and he was also in Clermont to see Greig. He'll be at the game on Sunday,' said the Scotland international.

'When I was first chatting to Gregor about leaving Glasgow, initially to Montpellier two summers ago, he wanted me to stay. He still wanted me to stay this time round, but we spoke about why I wanted to leave and what I was going to get from it as a player.

'I knew I would go at some point and he probably knew it as well. He's been really good about speaking to me about the challenges he faced when he went to France as a player.

'He has the experience from being here in France, from being all over the world. What I'm going through now, he's been there and done it all.' 

Sunday's match comes after Russell put in a man-of-the-match display against Toulon

Sunday's match comes after Russell put in a man-of-the-match display against Toulon

Townsend is concerned just how much rugby Russell will have to play for Racing 92. Initially, it was expected he would share the workload at fly-half with South African international Pat Lambie.

That may be the case later in the season but Lambie is sidelined after picking up a serious knee injury three minutes into Racing's European Champions Cup final defeat to Leinster back in May.

When he was playing at Glasgow Warriors, Russell was rested every four games. He won't have that luxury at Racing, who can play him whenever they like.

Not surprisingly, Townsend, while he was in Paris, made representations to the club not to overplay him.

'Coming to France, I'm outwith the control of the SRU,' said the 25-year-old. 'I knew that coming here I could potentially

read more from dailymail.....

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

PREV sport news Sergio Ramos does his best James Bond impression at FIFA Best Awards
NEXT sport news Huddersfield 16-42 Wakefield: Second half comeback helps visitors end hosts' ...