Huddersfield Town meeting the opposition.
Huddersfield Town surprised many by going all the way to the Championship Play-Off Final last May, where they were beaten by Nottingham Forest. Since then, they have lost their manager and some key players such as defender Harry Toffolo.
However, there is still reason to be positive as a fan of the Terriers. I spoke to Matt from the ‘Takes that chance’ podcast ahead of their second to last Preseason game before the League campaign gets underway.
Last season, Carlos Corberan guided Huddersfield Town to the Championship Play-Off Final where they would get beat against Nottingham Forest. What were your thoughts on last season, how special was it?
Last season was a bit of an Icarus season. We flew close to the sun and whilst doing so it was a fantastic, exciting and exhilarating ride, but whenever we have a good season it always feels like it’s going to be boom or bust. Sadly, it’s now a bit bust as players are being sold in droves.
Following the Play-off final defeat, Corberan’s departure was announced and he was replaced by Danny Schofield. What were your thoughts on Corberan’s time at Huddersfield as well as your thoughts on this managerial change?
Carlos had a bit of a rollercoaster with us, it started well but dipped to an incredible low of 3 wins in 23. Last season it escalated to high levels as did his popularity. It’s a real shame to lose a talented coach through what many perceive as a lack of board ambition (although that isn’t the full story) and there are a few worries that Danny Schofield doesn’t have enough experience, but he does have plenty of good will being a Huddersfield cult hero as a player.
What would you say is Schofield’s playing style? This may have only been seen in the Pre-Season games this summer despite him being at the club since 2020.
He was part of the Corberan coaching staff so I don’t think it will differ hugely from last season. In terms of shape, Schofield has preferred a 4231 in possession with a 442 out of possession to press high. It was a tactic deployed sparingly by Corberan so it’s not a huge departure.
Huddersfield Town is owned by Card Factory founder Dean Hoyle, what is the general feeling of him from the Terriers fanbase? Is the future looking promising with him at the club?
A little mixed. Dean was hugely popular when he sold the club in 2019. Since his return he’s been a little quiet with his intentions moving forward which has set tongues wagging and imaginations wandering towards a belief that he may be here to asset strip to take money back out of the club owed to him in loans. I’m sure he’ll come out and allay some fears soon.
Who would you say are Town’s key players? This summer they have signed attack-minded players in Millwall’s Connor Mahoney, Solihull’s Kyle Hudlin and AFC Wimbledon’s Jack Rudoni.
Sorba Thomas has fantastic set piece delivery, he will be our main focal point again. Duane Holmes makes a nuisance of himself in the final third and Danny Ward is a good hard working forward and if he can stay fit will spearhead our attack. Our key players though are in defence. Lee Nicholls is the current player of the year and the keeper is incredibly solid. Tom Lees was hugely influential at the heart of the defence.
How do you see the upcoming game panning out? What is your score prediction for the game on Saturday afternoon?
It’s a friendly innit. Plenty of running, plenty interchanges and not sure anyone will be bothered by the score. 1-1.
Tranmere Rovers and Huddersfield Town have faced each other on 48 occasions, have you got any memories from these fixtures? What are your favourite and worst memories, the best goals and moments etc?
Yeah, Tranmere were an absolute pain in the backside for us when i first started watching Huddersfield. Games at Prenton Park tended to be on Friday nights and we used to take a tonking every time or so it felt. Worst memory is probably either 1999 or 2002. We lost both at PP naturally but in 99 we absolutely dominated the game before losing 1-0 somehow. 2002 our old player Kevin Gray scored against us. It was quite early in the season and it was quite obvious we were going to be pretty naff that season. We were worse than naff.
Best goals and moments probably involve Marcus Stewart and a good 3-0 in 98, he scored with a half volley, back to goal which was pretty special. My last visit was in 2010 when Lee Novak scored twice.
If you have any, have you got any thoughts on Tranmere either as a club or the squad?
I enjoyed growing up with games against Tranmere and when you mention them I immediately remember John Aldridge, Kenny Irons and Joe Murphy and the scoreboard at Prenton Park flashing up as “Joe The Horse Murphy”. Not sure I want that one explaining… ?.
Overall it’s a good club which is probably unfortunate to be so close to Liverpool and Everton as I imagine they draw a lot of the local support. I still remember the schoolboy army lot and whenever I was in the away end you’d be guaranteed to have about twenty 13 year olds to the left of you vigorously forking you throughout the game ?. Good times.
Touching on Huddersfield’s transfer business this summer, are you happy with the players that have been recruited and would you say that there is any business left to do before the season starts on the 30th? What are the realistic goals for the upcoming campaign?
I think this is a year where we step back to hopefully go forward. We’ve got some talented players in the B team which we’ll look to bring through and have signed some good young players like David Kasumu and Jack Rudoni. We’ve lost some big players though, so I think mid table with an eye on attacking the future is fine.