Town’s Football Philosophy in focus
After the three part insight into recruitment at Huddersfield Town, htafc.com is now following up with a series on the Academy, which has seen a complete overhaul over the last year with huge changes in every aspect of its operations.
To read Chief Executive Nigel Clibbens’ explanation of the Club’s Vision and Strategy, click HERE
In part two, Huddersfield Town Manager Mark Robins - who worked for the Premier League on developing the EPPP before managing Coventry City and subsequently the Terriers - explained how important the Club’s football philosophy is.
“The football philosophy at Huddersfield Town is derived from the strategy set by the Board. The Chairman has a firm strategy and philosophy that fits with my own views on football and what he believes the Club is all about.
“This was a significant factor in my desire to join the Club as Manager in February 2013. It’s now down to the technical staff and the players, led by me, to deliver that philosophy out on the field.
“We want to work together, as a team, to win in a style that brings pride to the whole Club, its players, supporters and community consistent with the values of Huddersfield Town.
“There are several methods of measuring success for the Club. Winning games at First Team level is obviously vital and the top priority, leading to us moving up the football pyramid. We can do this by playing and beating teams that are perceived to be more established than us, whereas we also need to be consistently victorious against teams we are expected to beat. That should ensure year on year progression.
“We want to perform to the highest standards in all the areas of our game that are critical to winning, which we can also measure via our football analytics department.
“We want to create an experience, on and off the pitch, which inspires the whole Club, its players, supporters and community. We want to get 20,000 people on their feet going nuts in support, just like we saw in our game against Barnsley on the final day of the season.
“If we can do all of the above on a consistent basis, that will bring success.
“In terms of style and pattern of play, we must put the emphasis on scoring goals via a high tempo speed of play incorporating power, passion, a fighting spirit and commitment. We want to try and dominate the opposition by imposing our play onto them. We want to get possession, create and score.
“We want the team to be exciting to play in for our players and to watch for our supporters; we want to get the crowd on their feet.
“This culture and approach is long term and a big task. There are no quick fixes and it must be embraced and understood from top to bottom. I can see the Club progressing. That model of vision, leadership and management is at the heart of the approach to all at the Club.”
Huddersfield Town’s Academy Manager Mark Lillis explained the importance of instilling the Club’s football philosophy through every age group.
“The main aim of the Huddersfield Town Academy is to produce home-grown players for the Club’s First Team. In order to do this, it is vitally important that the same approach to football is shared and consistent from First Team through all our age groups, from under-8s up to the most senior Academy age groups.
“Huddersfield Town’s commitment to the Elite Player Performance Plan has presented our coaches with a massive opportunity. They now spend more time coaching our young footballers than ever before in first class facilities with expert back-up support and real drive and commitment from the Chairman, but we must ensure that time is being well spent and we deliver.
“A lot of hard work has gone on at the Academy to ensure all the coaches understand the DNA of Huddersfield Town. Having been a massive part of my life, I know all too well what Huddersfield Town is about. We have recruited these coaches over the past 12 months because their own football philosophy fits that of the Club, which should ensure that over the coming weeks, months and years the talent of our young footballers is applied with a full understanding of what is required at this Club.”
“Having home-grown players playing for our First Team fits perfectly with the values of Huddersfield Town, as every supporter will take great pride in cheering local lads performing for Town.
“Having a single football philosophy running throughout Huddersfield Town fits perfectly with the ‘One Club’ ethos set by the Board, as does having our Academy players and staff working alongside the senior First Team professionals at Canalside.
“It’s fantastic for me that the Academy forms such a key part of the Club’s long-term strategy and I’m sure that will help the Club go from strength to strength.”