Exclusive Jayden Stockley Preston North End column

Celebrating with Jordan Storey in the 4-1 win at Queens Park Rangers
Celebrating with Jordan Storey in the 4-1 win at Queens Park Rangers

My first month here has been a really good one and I’m pleased with how well things have gone.

The team has picked up some great results, we’ve been playing some very good football and I got myself off the mark quickly with the goal against Queens Park Rangers.

That was a big moment, finding the back of the net at Loftus Road.

Every player wants to hit the ground running at a new club and as a striker, you will be judged on goals.

So to get off the mark in my second game was really important and the finish pleased me.

The week before, I had made my debut in the home game against Swansea at Deepdale and done well, so to follow that up with a goal was a good feeling.

It’s been nice to play in front of some big crowds and at some good stadiums in this first few weeks.

Deepdale is a great place to play at, QPR and Stoke likewise.

The results we got in those two away games were huge and the atmosphere which our travelling fans generated was really good.

Looking back at last week’s game against Derby, I thought I should have scored at least one goal.

We deserved to win the game, everyone to a man played well and we had the chances to win it.

Although disappointed not to win the game, we got a point, which was something to show for our efforts.

This first month has been a learning experience for me.

I’m playing at a higher level and that brings some big demands.

In all four games so far, I’ve learned so much. You learn a lot about your 
opponent – the guy marking you – about the opposition in general and very importantly about your own team.

During training sessions, I’m taking advice from the gaffer, his staff and the other lads.

It is about taking all that information on board as quickly as possible and using it to my advantage.

What I have noticed about the games here is how much faster they are to what I’ve been used to.

You have to be quicker in your decision-making, quicker using your head.

A striker’s job at any level is to score goals but you have to be more clinical the higher up the levels you go.

In the Championship you don’t get as many chances as you would in League Two.

So when one comes along you really have to take it, with that a lesson learned for me against Derby.

It’s a welcoming dressing room here with all the lads helping me settle.

Within the squad there are some real characters which is great to have.

A lot of the boys are a similar age and everyone gets on well.

Away from the pitch, my family will be up here with me next month.

I have found somewhere to live and having them here soon is a big thing for myself.

It is important that as a family we experience what I do here together.

They’ve been up here a couple of times, while I’ve been back and forth a bit to see them between games and training.

Family is important – if you are settled off the pitch it helps you on it.

Probably a big factor in me settling into the dressing room here was the fact this was not the first move in my career.

I went on loan eight times from Bournemouth and that got me used to walking into a new environment and meeting different people.

You get to know how to be around people, how to join in and sometimes what not to do!

Coming here in January helped me too, rather than it being a summer move.

One minute I was playing for Exeter, the next I was up here signing for Preston and straight down to business.

If you move during the summer, there can be a bit of a gap between signing and then starting pre-season training.

In that time you could start to over-think things a little bit.

Some of my loan moves came mid-season and got me used to the process which saw me transfer here.

When I look back over my loan moves, I took something out of them all.

One of the best loans I had was to Accrington Stanley in 2011.

I was only 18 but Accy couldn’t do enough for me.

John Coleman and his No.2 Jimmy Bell were great with me and knew what I needed to get used to playing first-team football.

It was a long way from home but I’ve never minded travelling to play football.

The time I first went to Exeter on loan was also a very enjoyable one.