Latics guest player columnist - Donervon Daniels
I vividly remember my first opening day in the Championship.
It was during my time at Blackpool, and we played Nottingham Forest.
It was the best experience of my career so far...and that’s including winning the league last year!
Opening day in the Championship is just on a different level.
The sun’s shining, the grass is perfect, the fans are up for it, and the atmosphere is electric.
That’s one thing that’s kept pushing me whenever I’ve thought about all the hard work we’ve been doing over the past few weeks.
I think this year’s Championship going to be a lot different than in recent years.
It’s going to be one of the best leagues in the world in my opinion.
You look at some of the teams that have come down – Newcastle, Aston Villa – and they’re massive teams.
At the same time, we need to remember how good we are as a group of players, and implement what we have to do.
Every player in this league will be champing at the bit to get out there and prove a lot of things.
Obviously as a player and as a club you just want to get out there and do your best.
But the standard in the Championship this time is probably the best it’s ever been, with a lot of former Premier League teams in there with top-quality players – on a lot of money!
Everyone will have something to prove, and that includes us of course.
Bournemouth have shown it can be done, to go from the lower leagues through the Championship.
They got to the Premier League, and they had a really good season last year.
You’ve got to try and maintain that togetherness, like we did last year, and try and build on it.
Away from football, my summer’s been really, really good to be fair.
First it was over to Las Vegas with the boys, and then over to Mykonos with a few of my mates.
I just tried to keep ticking over, fitness-wise, and keep myself in good nick as much as I could.
It was my first time to Vegas, and it blew me away to be honest.
You had a lot of people saying how good it was and how good it can be – and it was even better than all the recommendations!
We all really enjoyed ourselves, and being with the boys was made it so much more special.
Spending 10 months with a group of boys, grafting away, and then spending a week just letting it all go...it was special.
Nobody hit the jackpot...in fact, a lot of people came back with much less money than they’d left with!
It wasn’t really about gambling, though.
I won’t lie to you...the partying was amazing!
It was the perfect way to celebrate winning promotion, and it’s going to take something to beat that if we do go up again!
We’ve set our sights high, at the top, and it’s all about working hard.
We’ve got momentum, as everyone’s been saying, and confidence from being a winning team, and we’re looking good.
We just need to keep going in the right direction, and I’m sure we’ll be where we want to be come the end of the season.
Donervon Daniels was speaking to Paul Kendrick