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UNDER-21: SEASON REVIEW

9 May 2014

Town’s youngsters win Northern League title

Huddersfield Town’s Under-21 side finished the 2013/14 campaign as Professional Development League 2 North league winners.

As the first of a series of end of season reviews, htafc.com has today reviewed a successful season for the Under-21s development squad.

After opening their competitive fixtures with a goalless draw at Nottingham Forest – where the development players had chances to win despite goalkeeper Lloyd Allinson being sent off – the Under-21s, led by Senior Professional Development Coach Steve Eyre, embarked upon a run of 13 straight wins in the division, spanning from the beginning of September to mid-March 2014. 

That winning run had already secured top spot in the Northern table ahead of the first League defeat of the season; a 2-1 defeat at Sheffield United on 18 March. Despite that, Town still finished the season 10 points clear of second placed Crewe Alexandra.

Unfortunately the Terriers could not get further than the semi-final stage of the season-ending Play-Offs, falling to a 3-2 home defeat at the hands of southern section runners-up QPR, with former England striker Andy Johnson netting a brace for Rangers as an overage player.



Rangers went on to lose the final at Loftus Road against Crewe.

The Under-21 league allows clubs to field three overage players, plus one overage ‘keeper, and Town used this rule to give important run-outs to the likes of Adam Clayton, Danny Ward, Joel Lynch, Ian Bennett, Paul Dixon, Anthony Gerrard and Oscar Gobern throughout the campaign. As part of his development, Jake Carroll was also a regular member of the side as an overage player.

However, a core of fully-fledged Under-21 development players formed the crux of the team throughout the season. Captain Jordan Sinnott made the most appearances, with his 15 starts coming in midfield and at right back, whereas the likes of Matt Crooks, Lloyd Allinson, Daniel Carr, Duane Holmes and Paul Mullin all making over 10 appearances.

Several Under-18 scholars like William Boyle, Joe Wilkinson, Philip Billing, Ben Holmes, Jake Charles and Flo Bojaj also made their first appearances at Under-21 level this term.

Most importantly, it’s really encouraging to report that members of the squad have progressed onto the pitch in the Championship; notably Tommy Smith and Duane Holmes alongside the likes of Harry Bunn, Daniel Carr and Philip Billing.

At a time when the Elite Player Performance Plan and the development of players is under scrutiny from FA Chairman Greg Dyke and the FA Commission, pathways from the Under-18s to Under-21 and the First Team are a key part of the Club’s plans. 

Striker Carr finished as the team’s top scorer with 10 goals in as many starts, but as injury disrupted the second half of his season Harry Bunn stepped up to net 8 goals in 11 appearances to continue the momentum.

At the conclusion of the season, Chris Atkinson and Paul Mullin have been released from the Club.

htafc.com can confirm today that Harry Bunn and Matt Crooks will be offered new contracts at Huddersfield Town alongside fellow Under-21 squad member Ed Wilczynski. The rest of the Under-21 development squad – the likes of Sinnott, Allinson, Carr, Joe Wright and Sondre Tronstad – are all under contract.

FINAL U21 PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE 2 NORTH TABLE:

 

 

 

HOME

AWAY

 

 

POS

TEAM

P

W

D

L

F

A

W

D

L

F

A

GD

PTS

1

Huddersfield Town

18

7

1

1

23

14

6

2

1

18

7

+20

42

2

Crewe Alexandra

18

4

4

1

17

11

4

4

1

23

11

+18

32

3

Sheffield United

18

6

2

1

19

10

3

3

3

10

13

+6

32

4

Birmingham City

18

5

2

2

15

7

2

3

4

9

17

0

26

5

Derby County

18

5

3

1

18

9

2

1

6

8

14

+3

25

6

Leeds United

18

3

5

1

14

11

2

3

4

11

18

-4

23

7

Barnsley

18

4

1

4

20

14

1

4

4

9

19

-4

20

8

Nottingham Forest

18

3

3

3

11

9

2

2

5

13

20

-5

20

9

Sheffield Wednesday

18

2

4

3

16

18

1

2

6

9

24

-17

15

10

Coventry City

18

0

2

7

8

19

1

3

5

12

18

-17

8


FINAL APPEARANCES AND SCORERS:

 

NAME

POSITION

STARTS

SUB

GOALS

Lloyd Allinson

Goalkeeper

11

 

 

Ben Atkinson

Midfielder

 

4

 

Chris Atkinson

Midfielder

2

 

1

Ian Bennett *

Goalkeeper

5

 

 

Philip Billing

Midfielder

2

4

 

Flo Bojaj

Striker

1

2

1

William Boyle

Defender

2

6

 

Harry Bunn

Striker

11

 

8

James Burke

Defender

9

1

 

Daniel Carr

Striker

10

1

10

Bradley Carroll

Defender

 

1

 

Jake Carroll *

Defender

11

 

 

Jake Charles

Midfielder

2

6

1

Adam Clayton *

Midfielder

2

 

 

Matt Crooks

Midfielder

12

 

1

Paul Dixon *

Defender

2

 

 

Anthony Gerrard *

Defender

2

 

 

Oscar Gobern *

Midfielder

2

 

 

Ben Holmes

Midfielder

 

4

 

Duane Holmes

Midfielder

11

 

3

Dale Hopson

Midfielder

9

 

 

Fraser Horsfall

Defender

1

1

 

Max Leonard

Striker

6

1

 

Joe Lolley

Striker

6

 

 

Cristian Lopez *

Striker

9

 

6

Joel Lynch *

Defender

2

 

 

Robbie McIntyre

Defender

2

2

 

Paul Mullin

Striker

12

7

3

Nathaniel Pells

Defender

1

 

 

Liam Ridehalgh

Defender

1

 

 

Anton Robinson *

Midfielder

6

 

1

Sean Scannell *

Midfielder

1

 

1

Jordan Sinnott

Midfielder

15

 

6

Tommy Smith

Defender

9

 

 

Keith Southern *

Midfielder

4

 

 

Jimmy Spencer

Striker

1

 

 

Mikey Starkey

Defender

 

1

 

Jonathan Stead *

Striker

2

 

2

Sondre Tronstad

Midfielder

7

1

 

Murray Wallace

Defender

9

 

 

Danny Ward *

Midfielder

1

 

 

Ed Wilczynski

Goalkeeper

4

1

 

Joe Wilkinson

Defender

2

6

 

Calum Woods *

Defender

4

 

 

Joe Wright

Defender

9

2

 

 

* Indicates overage player


Next up on Monday is a review of Town's Under-18 season!

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