Burgess: Stepping Up

Wednesday 12 October 2016 11:00

With 16 games for Oldham Athletic under his belt already this season, Cameron Burgess feels he is constantly improving his game.

The 20-year-old has played every minute of the Latics’ campaign to date, and is thoroughly enjoying his loan spell with the Sky Bet League One outfit.

“I’m loving it,” Burgess told fulhamfc.com. “The boys have made it so easy for me, they’re all very welcoming. The management and coaching staff have also been brilliant, so it’s going really well for me.

“It’s a club with a lot of history who have enjoyed some good cup runs in previous years. Big Matty Smith was here so I spoke to him before I came up. He knows the club and the area well so it was good to get a bit of knowledge.

“The club’s been really great with setting me up with a flat, and Fulham have given me a lot of support in that respect as well.

“I speak to Fulham on at least a weekly basis, sometimes more so. I speak to the medical staff after games and things like that, and the coaching staff touch base regularly as well, which is good.”

Oldham endured a tough start to the season, but last weekend’s away win at Gillingham saw them climb off the foot of the table, and despite still occupying a relegation place, they’re now just six points from the Play-Off spots.

“It is a really tight league, and we’ve seen that already,” Burgess explained. “First game of the season we got beat by Millwall quite heavily, but if you look at the table now we’re on the same points as them.

“Anyone can beat anyone in this division, and I suppose it’s good for us to see because we’re not that far adrift, especially after not having a great start in the league. So a couple of wins on the bounce can push you right up there.

“It’s great to get some points on the board. We were never really worried as a team, we all believe in ourselves, but it’s nice to get that win secured and hopefully we can go on a bit of a run. We’re a lot more confident now going into the next game.”

Burgess spent the second half of 2015/16 at Cheltenham Town, and helped them romp to the Vanarama National League title.

And while that loan stint was enjoyable for obvious reasons, the centre-back is relishing the test that playing two divisions higher presents.

“It was great last season,” he stated. “We went into every game with our heads held high, knowing we could beat anyone. Teams made it hard for us but we knew if we could get an early goal then we could do really well.

“This season it’s a lot tougher because any team at any time can do something special and go and win the game because there’s a lot of quality in the league, and it’s another step up in that respect.

“For me personally it’s been a massive step up. I owe guys like Peter Clarke who have helped me along the way. To go from playing in the Conference to League One, you just learn so much in every minute of every game. It’s great to get the experience.

“Playing at this level is improving me as a footballer, 100 per cent. When you come up against so many different types of striker for example, it just improves my game dramatically. Each match I feel I’ve got so much better.”

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