While Alex Gilbey didn’t quite have a ‘dream’ debut last weekend, there was only one thing missing.
Great debut performance – check.
Debut goal – check.
It is early days yet, look back to how last season’s promotion campaign started and last weekend’s 2-1 loss to Bristol City doesn’t exactly seem earth shattering, but it still left Gilbey with an itch to scratch.
“Obviously I’d rather have three points with a goal,” he said when asked about his eye-catching first performance in a Wigan shirt.
“We should never have lost that game. I think first I thought we were brilliant but I think in the second half we didn’t quite get it right.
“We let them play and we gave them too much respect.”
But the 21-year-old summer signing from Colchester will be given a quick chance to tick the next item off his list when Blackburn Rovers visit the DW Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
And after firing in the first of what fans hope will be many Latics goals after some nice work from Yanic Wildschut last weekend, Gilbey will also be able to tweak his midfield partnerships with the likes of David Perkins and Max Power, which are already showing plenty of promise.
And on Wildschut’s speed, Gilbey said: “We work on that in training.
“Yanic’s one of the quickest people I’ve seen so it’s up to me and Max to get around him and get off those second balls.
“I said it to him in training – when you’ve run I’ve got to run.”
Gilbey says his midfield partners are ‘in a different class’ as he gets used to his new club.
The 21-year-old was one of Gary Caldwell’s first recruits of the summer, arriving from Colchester.
Gilbey has settled in superbly alongside David Perkins and Max Power, and celebrated his arrival with the opening goal of last weekend’s 2-1 defeat to Bristol City.
But Gilbey credits his strong start to his team-mates.
He said: “I’m loving every minute of it now.
“I’ve played against Perks and Max in previous years and was chasing them around and now those people are around together.
“They are a different class and I’m learning from them every day.”
Gilbey wasn’t named in Gary Caldwell’s squad for last Tuesday’s 2-1 defeat to Oldham, which bundled them out of the League Cup, but the midfielder says given the effort he’s put in since his arrival, he hopes to become a regular in the team.
“I want to play and it’s the gaffer’s choice,” he explained.
“I feel like personally I’ve had a good pre-season, he’s shown a lot of faith in me over the pre-season games, and when you’re working with players like this you’re obviously going to get better and I feel like I’m a better player already.
“I can’t wait to get properly underway and keep playing with these lads.
“Pre-season was tough – a lot of running – and we look fit.”
Gilbey, originally from Dagenham, will hope his move north will bring success following his 110 appearances for Colchester, scoring seven goals. And he says as well as learning from his new colleagues, he has also been made to feel welcome.
“From day one I’ve come in and the boys have put me under their wing.
“It’s been an unbelievable changing room to come into,” he said.
“It’s completely different, but I’m loving it. I’m loving living away from home.”