Talking football: Let's hope we pick up where we left off...
Is it me or do football off-seasons get shorter and shorter every year?
Incredibly it’ll be 13 weeks this weekend since Latics were presented with the League One title on the final day of last season.
Since then we’ve had the Euros to keep us entertained, although what a shame Will Grigg never got the chance to prove his flammability on thefield in France.
With England once again flattering to deceive, it was left to Wales to fly the flag for the home nations.
And how close did they come to going all the way only to come up short against eventual winners Portugal in the last four?
Anyway, that’s all history now, and it’s over to the real business of the Championship campaign getting under way.
Latics could certainly have been handed an easier start than Bristol City away.
But it’s an early reminder of just how tough and arduous the coming nine months are going to be.
Let’s hope Gary Caldwell and his players will be able to pick up where they left off, and take some of the momentum generated from the run-in into this season.
We’ve seen before how newly-promoted teams can get off to flyer with the feel-good factor around the place.
If Latics can hit their straps early doors – which they didn’t manage in both previous Championship campaigns since relegation from the Premier League – who knows how good this season could be...
Despite Latics ending pre-seas on on a high with wins over Oldham and Fleetwood, I don’t think many Championship teams would have been quaking in their boots.
Of course, results mean little at this stage of the season, with most of the emphasis on getting match minutes into legs and working on combinations with the new players.
Speaking of which, I’ve been very impressed with the way young Alex Gilbey’s settled into his new surroundings.
It might have been daunting for some 21-year-olds to up sticks from Essex and move up north for a new challenge.
Especially so given the two direct competitors in your position – David Perkins and Max Power – were first and second in last season’s Player of the Year reckoning.
But Gilbey has risen to the challenge superbly in pre-season, and looked every inch a class signing from Gary Caldwell.
Who could well have a very interesting decision on his hands when it comes to selecting the engine room for Saturday’s opener at Bristol City...
Never let it be said Evening Post snapper Bernard Platt doesn’t go the extra mile to get the picture.
When Max Power opened the scoring last Friday night at Fleetwood, Platty succeeded in getting the money shot...while being splatted from above by seagull droppings!
“It got the side of my face, my arm, my jeans,” moaned the St Helener at half-time, as we all tried to keep a straight face. “It were warm as well...”
In the crowd at Fleetwood last Friday night was Uwe Rosler, who was named Town boss over the weekend.
It obviously didn’t end well for the German here at Wigan, and his attempts to get back on the horse at Leeds didn’t come off.
But after taking a bit of time out, it’s great to see him back in the game...and I’d back him to start rebuilding his reputation at a club that impressed me on and off the field during our recent visit.
It was well after 11pm when I returned home from Fleetwood last Friday night.
After checking all of my copy had hit the Wigan Today website, I was surprised to see Wolves making the decision to sack Kenny Jackett. At 11.18pm! On a Friday!
My thoughts immediately turned to my counterparts in the Black Country, whose Friday night ‘off’ suddenly turned into a busy news day.
Some journos I know would struggle to open a laptop at that time on a Friday night, let alone file some very important copy!
Fortunately there was an open-goal headline waiting for them when they did come to file...‘No Jackett Required’.
Although it was ‘Against All Odds’ anyone in the news room would have found the funny side at that time...
Anyone not familiar with the Phil Collins back catalogue, ask your mum or dad!
Fair play to David Moyes for some outstanding rose-tinted evaluationof his managerial record after being appointed at Sunderland earlier
“I think I’ve got the fourth-best win record out of all the managers in the Premier League,” opined Moyes. Who, coincidentally enough, also happens to have managed the fourth-most amount of games in the Premier League. And guess what, the fourth-most defeats by any Premier League manager...