Latics guest column - Sam Morsy
It was great to get our League One campaign to a winning start at MK Dons last weekend.
A win on the road and a clean sheet – it doesn’t get much better than that, does it.
Great win, great support...the only disappointing thing is it could and should have been more.
I’m not sure they had many clear-cut chances, we had several, it was a really positive day.
We had a lot of new lads in the side and it will take time to gel.
But we want to start fast in everything we do – in games and in the season.
It was a brilliant goal from Nick Powell, and that’s what he’s capable of.
Unfortunately he picked up a little strain, and hopefully it won’t be too bad.
But there’s quality all over the team, and it’s going to be a big season for us.
We had to do it tough, going down to 10 men in the first half, after Callum Elder was sent off.
Personally, I think the red was a poor decision, and the referee missed a number of yellow cards for them.
He probably felt he had to level it up in the second half, which led to their red card, and he certainly didn’t help himself.
But you can never make excuses for that and, when they went down to 10 men, we showed our dominance and should have had more.
One thing we did say at half-time was that we weren’t going to make any excuses.
We weren’t going to go down with a whimper, and then blame it on going down to 10 men.
We were determined to get the result, and put down a marker for the rest of the season.
We just need to be a little bit more ruthless, but that will come.
Will Grigg’s been injured for so long, and it will take him games to get that sharpness back.
Once he does get the sharpness back, there’s going to be goals this season for sure.
On a personal note, it was a very proud moment to be named captain by the gaffer last week.
Obviously it’s an honour to captain any club, and I’m very happy to have been chosen.
I wouldn’t say I was surprised, although I didn’t necessarily think I’d get the call.
I’ve always tried to lead from the front in my own right.
I’ve been captain at clubs before, but you need leaders all over the pitch regardless of who’s got the armband.
Having the trust of the manager is imperative.
You need to be able to trust the rest of the team as well, but that trust with the management is so important.
Once you start to establish that, you become a powerful force.
Football’s a funny game – especially given what’s happened to me over the last 12 months (from going out on loan to Barnsley).
Obviously the manager’s come in – someone I’ve worked under before – and I’m delighted to be working with him again.
For me it’s just about getting my head down and having a successful season.
Having worked with the gaffer before, I know he’s a great motivator.
He gets his team out of the traps, pressing hard, and you can see the energy we had at the weekend.
A lot of the lads have got promoted from this level before, and obviously every player wants to play at a higher level.
The only way you can do that is get promoted, and that’s the aim for all of us this season.
There’s good players all over the squad who’ve not had the chance yet.
Alex Gilbey, for example, is a very good player, who didn’t even get on at MK Dons, and he’ll no doubt be back in the team before he knows it.
It’s a long season, it’s a squad game, and we need everyone at it.
Sam Morsy was speaking to Paul Kendrick