Boss encouraged by Bolton point
Simon Grayson was encouraged by his side’s display against Bolton last week and is confident that a win is just around the corner for his players.
Town hasn’t won in five, but Simon told htafc.com that spirits are still high in the camp.
“The players aren’t down about our recent form, there is no pressure on us despite the fact that we haven’t won in five,” said Simon. “We gave Bolton a brilliant game last weekend, it swung backwards and forwards and we showed what we are capable of. Our form is what this division is all about, one minute you can be flying then the next minute on a bad run of form. We are confident in our ability.”
The winter chill has hit Huddersfield over the past week making preparations for the Hull game harder for Town’s boss and his players.
“I think it’s been a bit of a struggle at most clubs this week because of the frost and waterlogged pitches. It’s been very difficult for us. We’ve tried to utilise the indoor facilities we have, but with that there’s only probably half the squad that can train on it – players are often reluctant to go on it because of previous injuries to ankles or knees as it can make them even worse. You end up going into the gym and doing cardiovascular work.”
He continued: “It’s not been ideal preparation. We tried to get onto the Stadium pitch on Thursday, but even with under-soil heating it was frozen as well! However, you have to get on with it – we’re not the only club that will have suffered as a consequence of the weather this week. I think we will be on the pitch this morning (Friday) and we’ll get a bit of team work done on the shape. It will be nice to get that ready, although on a Friday you never do too much work anyway – you save the legs. Rest is particularly important given Saturday is an early kick-off.
“Some of the lads also played in a reserve game on Tuesday and that will benefit them, because the players who do not play at the weekend need to be ready for the bust Christmas period we have coming up."
Town’s opponents this Saturday are in a good run of form and currently sit 4th in the npower Championship.
“When you look at Hull, you see they retain the ball really well. People talk about the likes of Swansea in the division above and Brighton in our division in those terms, but Hull have one of the highest pass completion ratios around. Steve (Bruce) has brought a new system to the Club and their players seem very comfortable in that. They have some good, experienced players like Koren and they have certainly contributed to a successful season so far.
“I think it’s all been laid out since Steve arrived in the summer; I don’t think he would have dropped down from the Premier League unless there was a vision for the football club and he thought they could move forward.
Simon delivered some good news on the injury front by confirming that all his injured players are not far from a return to first team action.
“The players that have been injured have made good progress, but it is difficult to assess where they are exactly because we haven’t been able to do much football work. The work that we do on Friday could determine if they are fit for selection. That isn’t an ideal scenario because I would have liked to have known sooner so that we could have done some work with them. If the players don’t make the weekend then we would like to think that they will be fit for the Crystal Palace game.
“When we have a full complement of players our squad is very strong and I believe that we can compete with any team in the League. It gives the players a boost when they see the big players returning from injury.”
Jermaine Beckford’s last appearance for the Terriers was against Barnsley over a month ago and Simon confirmed that we could be seeing him in the blue and white of Town in the not so distant future.
“Jermaine has done well and will train with the squad on Friday. If he is declared fit then he will play from the bench, he doesn’t have the match fitness to start. We won’t rush him back; it is more important that he is fit for the long term rather than the short term.
“His injury record isn’t too bad; he hasn’t really suffered that many major problems during his career. He has been a little unlucky since he arrived here and it is unfortunate for us because we also had James Vaughan out at the same time. I don’t think we will be making a permanent move for him as he still has a few years left on his contract at Leicester and he is on good money. We are looking to try and secure him on loan until the end and talks have progressed well.”