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Why am I excited for life in the Championship?

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Not all things are going to be doom and gloom in the Championship - our newest writer, Molly Burke, takes a look at some of the positives ahead of next season.

Sunderland v Swansea City - Premier League Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

There is no doubt that every football fan wants their team playing at the highest level, but saying goodbye to Premier League football was hardly unexpected, and therefore not particularly disappointing.

Of course despite officially being the worst team in the top tier of English football there will be things that I will miss in the Premier League. However after having so many months to prepare for relegation, I have gradually started to look forward to life in the Championship.

In the wake of David Moyes’ demolition of Sunderland - which will see us playing the likes of Sheffield United and Burton Albion come August - there are a few positives to take ahead of next season.

Burton Albion v Queens Park Rangers - Sky Bet Championship
Who isn’t looking forward to a trip down to the Pirelli Stadium?
Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images

Away games

Everyone loves the excitement of away days. Jumping on a bus in the early hours of the morning, visiting different stadiums around the country and standing in the away end singing your heart out.

And now we’re faced with a new set of grounds alongside incredibly passionate fans. Being at University in Derby means I will be surrounded by brilliant away days with the likes of both Sheffield sides, Villa and Birmingham close by, giving me another reason to rinse out my bank account - though I couldn’t think of many better ways to spend it.


Night games

My favourite visits to the SoL have always been the ones on a night time. It’s freezing cold and pitch black, but the 11th May 2016 was a game which epitomised exactly why these matches are the best.

You spend your whole day at work or school, completely distracted by the thought of heading to the stadium that evening to grab a seat on the rollercoaster that is Sunderland’s season.

The atmosphere is electric from kick-off, the tension is thrilling, and when Lamine Kone grabs a brace to relegate Newcastle and secure our Premier League status there is no better feeling than sitting in that freezing cold, pitch black stadium.

With each Championship team playing 46 league games a season, as well as Cup fixtures, night games are a must.

It may not be quite the same as beating Everton on that night last May, but it will still be my favourite day of the week no matter the opposition.

Sunderland v Hull City - Premier League
Night games are great, so long as the lights are working.
Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Winning games

I am hoping I am not getting too ahead of myself in assuming that winning games will become more of a regular thing now that we are in the Championship.

Despite the inevitable losses of Jordan Pickford and Jermain Defoe, we should have one of the stronger squads in the league, and now that Moyes can no longer mercilessly siphon the life and soul out of our beloved club we might actually win a few games.

It’s been a long time since I have jumped at the chance to watch Sunderland play football and nothing excites me more than the thought of being able to celebrate three points every now and then - because I have almost forgotten what it feels like.


Wembley

Of course the likelihood of reaching the Play-Offs will completely depend on who Ellis Short and Martin Bain decide to bring in this summer - coupled with the quality of our summer signings - but we should be disappointed if our team aren’t capable of fighting for a promotion spot.

I have only been to Wembley once - the League Cup Final in 2014 - and there was nothing more exhilarating than seeing Fabio Borini put us 1-0 up followed by a sea of red and white doing the Poznan.

To do that all again with the prize of gaining promotion at the end would be beyond brilliant.