29-year-old goalkeeper Jamie Jones hopes to make more lasting memories following promotion and his new contract.
- Interview: Jamie Jones on his new one-year contract at Wigan Athletic.
- 29-year-old goalkeeper delighted to be rewarded with Championship football.
- Stopper reflects on a title-winning and record-breaking first campaign at the DW Stadium.
A year on from arriving at the DW Stadium, title-winning and record-breaking goalkeeper Jamie Jones has put pen to paper on a new one-year contract, with the 29-year-old delighted to be rewarded for his efforts towards a standout campaign in the club's history.
Speaking to iFollow Latics at the Wigan Athletic Training Centre on Monday afternoon, Jones said:
"I set a goal last season to come here and get promoted and collectively we've done it. Individually I've played my part in it so I'm over the moon to have been rewarded with a one-year contract and the chance to be in the Championship.
"It's a difficult league, it's a big jump and we know that. I'm sure we'll go out and get the players we need and add to what we've got. We'll push on and aim to finish as high as we can.
"I hadn't worked with the gaffer or the staff before I came here but I was excited about it at the time. Having the last 12 months with the staff and players here has exceeded all of my expectations, it's been absolutely unbelievable.
Along with his team mates, and specifically Christian Walton, Jones helped to set new club records throughout the campaign, with his nine clean sheets and Walton's 18 clean sheets helping to keep a new record of 27 in a single league campaign.
"We finished with 98 points and broke a lot of records along the way," Jones continued.
"As a team and together as a club there's only one way this club is going and that's definitely up.
"Me and Christian pushed each other on throughout the season and we've got a great relationship. I'm old enough and professional enough to do my job in the team and naturally I wanted to stay in the team longer, but I got injured myself just as Christian was coming back from his injury.
"Together we got to that 26 clean sheets and Christian pushed it one further to 27 by the end of the season, but it's a club record for us all. The defence in front of us, with Samy and Max, was brilliant. The way we controlled games because of how the manager sets us up was a collective thing and we all deserve credit for it.
Behind every good player is a good coach, and that's certainly what Jamie thinks of his goalkeeping coach, Nick Colgan.
"Nick (Colgan) was made up to see us both succeed. He's one of the nicest coaches I've met in football and the way he gets us working is outstanding. His hard work comes across onto the pitch and that's why we get records like we did and I'm sure that's going to carry on next season with the work we do with Nick."
After capturing the Sky Bet League One title on the final day of the season at Doncaster Rovers, Latics' players have earned the right to put their feet up, at least for a short while, something Jones has been enjoying.
"It's been a pretty hectic period, we've celebrated well. When we got promoted at Fleetwood Town we celebrated well, but we kept it professional because we wanted to go and win the league.
"After the Doncaster game we could let ourselves go a little bit more. We've created some of the best memories that will live with us forever. I'm lucky enough to be celebrating promotion for a second time because some players never get to experience this feeling, on the other hand, some people like Gary Roberts get to do it a lot, he's had five now!
"It's been a brilliant few weeks, we've all been away together and we celebrated in Las Vegas. We had an unbelievable time there and the bond between us is a massive part of our success.
"It's a tough season. People think it's easy sometimes because we're only in from 9.00am to 2.00pm, but it's a long 10-month season travelling up and down the country playing to win points for the team and supporters."
Although enjoying his time to relax, Jones says he's got one eye on returning to pre-season training, and can't wait to get back out to where he knows best.
"It's great to be celebrating and enjoying time off, but I do miss being around the training ground. For me, training is one of the best things about playing football, going out onto the pitches every day is unbelievable. In the summer you always miss the banter between the lads, so I'm sure every single on of us can't wait to get back for pre-season."