Eddie Howe will be a Premier League manager soon
Appearing 271 times over 12 years for the same club usually qualifies any player - regardless of ability - a place in supporters' hearts.
Progress through the ranks at said club as an unproven coach, save the club from relegation to non-league football, then mastermind a pair of promotions that now leave the club atop the Championship, and you start to get a sense of just how revered Eddie Howe is on the south coast at Bournemouth.
At 36, Howe is one of the youngest managers in the Football League, and despite never competing at a level higher than the second tier, it appears a matter of time until he finds himself plying his trade in the Premier League.
He showed admirable loyalty to Bournemouth when turning down then-Championship outfit Peterborough to stay on with the Cherries in 2009, but did have his head turned when deciding to join Burnley for an underwhelming spell at Turf Moor two years later - returning after just 18 months citing "unfinished business" with his boyhood club.
Fast forward two years and you can see what he meant.
Bournemouth sit top of the Championship, their highest ever position, and under Howe's guidance they look well equipped to mount a serious promotion challenge this year, thanks to a youthful squad bursting with talent assembled largely by himself. Might there be a bit of value in Bournemouth's current promotion price of 6.05/1?
His stock is rising, and it appears Howe will be managing very soon in the Premier League - with or without Bournemouth.
Blackpool may not be whipping boys this year
Let's face it - as far as pre-seasons go, Blackpool's was pretty awful.
Cancellation of the clubs warm-up tour of Spain due to lack of players was followed by the now infamous team sheet submitted for a summer friendly at Penrith, where five of the starting lineup went by the name of simply "Trialist".
Just a few weeks ago the Tangerines had only eight players on their books, and they remain odds-on favourites to be relegated to League One (they were widely available at 3/1 this time last year). The backlash from the fans has been predictably intense, and at times the atmosphere around Bloomfield Road this summer has been nothing short of poisonous.
Still, a devil-may-care attitude appears to be slowly replacing the doom and gloom around the place as a much needed influx of additions including Ishmail Miller, Andrea Orlandi and Nile Ranger have beefed out the squad considerably to help bring the numbers up.
A squad full of new faces that had no pre-season whatsoever is bound to struggle initially, and you wonder whether players are wearing name badges at training.
However, after a poor first half they improved considerably in defeat at Nottingham Forest in the latter stages of their curtain raiser at the City Ground, and consolidated that with a positive performance in their opening home game last weekend, pushing Blackburn all the way but ultimately falling short.
Boss Jose Riga spoke after the game of his side's "fighting spirit and quality", but lamented the lack of fitness, saying they are not physically ready yet.
Amid such a farce, Blackpool are effectively using the first handful of league games as their belated pre-season, but once they get themselves fit and ready, they may not be the pushovers everyone expects them to be.
Sami Hyypia might find the Championship tough going
Nine months ago Sami Hyypia was widely being tipped as one of Europe's brightest managerial prospects having guided his Bayer Leverkusen side to second place in the Bundesliga.
Form took a huge nosedive the following season though, and the Finn was eventually sacked after just one win in 12 matches.
He now finds himself at Brighton, tasked with the responsibility of getting the Seagulls into the top flight for the first time in the clubs history. That goal already feels a long way off for Brighton, who after an uninspiring summer that saw the departures of key players Leonardo Ulloa and Will Buckley, have started sluggishly in the league as well.
Two defeats from two - gifting Birmingham their first home win in ten months last time out- will have done little to quell the growing doubts of fans that the former Liverpool centre-back, having never played in this notoriously unpredictable league, may not be the right man for the job.
Replacements can ensure Leeds will be fine without McCormack
It's been a period of transition for Leeds United recently, starting with madcap Massimo Cellino's acquisition of the club earlier this year, and culminating with the sale of top scorer Ross McCormack.
The Elland Road outfit must have hardly believed their luck when Fulham shelled out almost £11million for the Scotsman's services - a record fee for a Championship player - helping to ease the clubs ongoing financial worries.
And they have wasted no time in signing a terrific replacement.
Billy Sharp joined last week and immediately endeared himself to the Leeds fans, scoring the winner in his debut against Middlesbrough on Saturday. It feels like he has been around forever yet Sharp is still only 28 and should be in his prime right now, and with 136 goals in 314 appearances in the Football League it appears Leeds have got themselves a proven poacher at this level.
Though the fee remains undisclosed, Sharp reportedly took a 50% wage cut to play regular first team football. He led the line superbly in his debut, and lived up to his name in and around the box.
It is early days yet, but if he can replicate this sort of form, Leeds fans might just be asking "Ross who?" come May.
The Championship will be as crazy as ever this season
Is there a harder league to predict as the Championship? Probably not.
Burnley were just 5.04/1 to be relegated last season yet stormed to promotion with games to spare. Few would have foreseen lowly Blackpool going up through the playoffs back in 2009. Some big name casualties have slipped through to the third tier in the past, including Manchester City, Leicester, Southampton, Leeds, Sheffield Wednesday and Wolves, and you would not be surprised to see that trend continue.
Last year Harry Redknapp's QPR became just the seventh team to bounce straight back to the Premier League following relegation, highlighting the size of the task that awaits this year's demoted trio of Norwich, Cardiff and Fulham - with the latter yet to register a point.
It already promises to be a great season, and with 44 games to go, there are sure to be plenty of twists and turns along the way.