When I sat down to write this morning I never did so with anything particularly in mind. I’m just so overcome with enthusiasm and excitement right now that I wanted to sit and talk about how happy everything is making me at the minute - a far cry from the depression and disappointment of covering this club on a day to day basis even just six months ago.
It’s one of the most often-used clichés around but it’s true - football is a funny old game, and the way that a good result can effect your mood is something I don’t think I’ll ever truly come to grips with.
I’ve been bouncing off the walls all morning, all because my team appear to have learned how to win games of football with style. I can’t get enough of everything - I’m constantly scrolling social media, reading articles, watching videos, talking to the Lads at work about the performance... you know what I mean.
In fact, I know you do, you there reading this. You feel exactly the same, don’t you?
Sunderland’s descent into the third tier is something which fans of opposition clubs - namely, Newcastle United supporters - have used to beat us over the head with ever since our relegation to League One was sealed.
I don’t understand why, though.
Find me a Sunderland fan who isn’t absolutely loving life at the minute and I’ll call that man a liar. The fact of the matter is that, regardless of our league status, we are winning games of football and enjoying just about everything coming out of the club at the minute.
Who doesn’t enjoy watching their team play good football?
I’ll take this over battling relegation in the Premier League every day of the week.
Fans of this club have been tortured and beaten into the ground for far too long now and, in many ways, I feel like we deserve to experience this pleasure having suffered from all the bad times in our recent past.
You cannot bottle the enthusiasm that the supporters of this club have at the minute. The fact that almost 2200 Lads fans made the 600-mile round trip for this game on a Wednesday night shows you just how happy we all are at present.
And the home attendances will surely soar with it, provided of course the results continue to be positive and the football on display is of a high quality.
What I love about this new-look side is that we’ve brought players to the club that understand just how huge an opportunity they have in playing for Sunderland AFC. Chris Maguire, for example, still amazes me every single time I watch him play - I can’t believe that this is the same man that was roundly hated by supporters of relegated Bury last season.
Obviously, it wasn’t a one-way situation there and I don’t doubt that Maguire wasn’t enjoying his football with the Shakers, but he’s came to Sunderland and quite obviously realises that this is the big move he’s waited his whole career for. And, without any real challenge for his place in the side due to the injuries sustained by Aiden McGeady and Duncan Watmore, Maguire has grasped the opportunity to make the position his own, shining in each and every one of the games he has played in so far in a red and white shirt.
You could say the same for Jack Baldwin, Max Power and Jon McLaughlin - all players who have never played for a club of this stature and know that this is a chance to really progress their careers whilst playing for a club that is capable of not only getting out of this division, but also challenging for promotion in the next if our attitude is right.
It’s early days and there will undoubtedly be bumps in the road between now and the end of the season, but we have to remain focused on our aim to get promoted - both as supporters and as a club.
It now feels as though we are ONE - there’s no division, no animosity, just a very clear aim in sight and a club that hasn’t been as together as this since Roy Keane dragged us out of the Championship over eleven years ago.
Keep on enjoying it, people, because you’ve earned this.