Town Manager looks ahead to Ipswich clash
Manager Chris Powell is looking forward to coming up against a familiar duo when he takes his Huddersfield Town side to Ipswich Town on Saturday.
Powell is very familiar with his opposite number Mick McCarthy and his assistant Terry Connor, who will be in the opposition dugout for the Tractor Men at the weekend, and is looking forward to pitting his wits against the former Republic of Ireland boss.
“Under Mick, Ipswich will always have a shout (of promotion). I know Mick and his number two Terry really well and we will be ready for a reaction to their midweek defeat on Saturday. They have done a good job so far,” Chris told htafc.com.
“I feel they are a side that will finish in the top half, but whether they will finish in the top six will often depend on the final six weeks of the campaign. They will be competitive throughout the season; it’s always a surprise when they lose a game! That’s down to the nature of how they play and what Mick demands of them.
“They play some football and score goals; they always have since Mick took charge. They’re a good sized club with a good squad and excellent history.”
Saturday’s opponents have a formidable front three in Daryl Murphy, David McGoldrick and Conor Sammon, but Powell is aware of all their threats:
“I’ve been thinking about this game before Brighton, because I’m always trying to plan ahead – that’s what you have to do. Ipswich has some attacking threats, not only up front but from one or two other areas as well.
“We’ll have to make sure our tactics are spot on and that the players are ready to implement whatever game-plan we ask of them at Portman Road.
“Like all the games, I’m looking forward to it – it should be a very good Championship game.”
The Terriers go into the game in good form, having claimed 11 points from the last possible 15 after Tuesday night’s draw at home to Brighton.
Chris continued: “The side is developing slowly but surely. We’ve had a marked improvement and I have to say that everyone has bought into what I’m after. We’re going along ok.
“I’m sure people were expecting us to win on Tuesday – maybe that’s the atmosphere we’ve created – but we have to be careful with that. I would like us to keep going along under the radar, picking up one and three points. Getting points consistently is important for the mind-set of the team.”
Powell explained that he has the same pool of players to choose from ahead of this weekend; a bonus as the team prepares for its third game in just eight days.
“I would think that everyone we had on Tuesday will be available on Saturday. I’m sure it will be quite lively for Grant (Holt) with his Norwich connections!
“We always know that three game weeks are tough, but our lads worked really hard on Tuesday. The good thing is that they were happy and willing to do the work and it resulted in us maintaining our unbeaten run. I’ll have to be careful and box clever with them though.
“Jonathan Hogg could have played at Blackburn recently, but if he had he may not have played in the last two games. I’d rather players recover correctly and play more games.”
There are several big names waiting for a chance at the moment, including the Club’s top scorer Nahki Wells:
“Nahki is training brilliantly. He’s naturally frustrated that he’s not playing, but equally he would be the first to admit that it is hard for me to get him in the team as the three front boys have been excellent; they’ve given us a real balance.
“However, I won’t keep this formation forever; I will change. Sometimes you get a feel to make one or two changes if you think it’s right for the game you’re going to play. It won’t always work out, but at the moment it has done.
“Nahki is important to me and this team, because he is a goal-scorer at this level. Every Manager will tell you that the more of those you have the better. He knows he will get chances and when he does, I’ll be the first to hope he takes them. He’s already won a game on his own with his two goals against Millwall and we will definitely see more of that. He’s a big player for us and the fact he hasn’t started recently means nothing.”
Another player having to bide his time is Polish international Radoslaw Majewski, but Powell explained that his chance will come:
“Radi wasn’t sub on Tuesday, but he was (against Blackpool) at the weekend. That was a choice I made specific to the conditions of Tuesday’s game.
“He’s had a real stop-start time here so far due to a personal issue a few weeks back and now he’s just become a father last night, which is brilliant! Now we will see if he has recovered and is ok to travel!
“He’s a great character – someone I like. He’s got a chance here and when it comes, I really hope it works out.
“Our midfield is playing very well at the minute; they’re dovetailing well as they all have different attributes that complement one another. It would be hard for me to take any of them out at the moment, but I wouldn’t be afraid to do it if I felt it was right.”
Chris also welcomed the impending return of Adam Hammill, who is expected to train for the first time after injury on Monday:
“Adam has been out due to a few knocks, but he should be back training on Monday; that will be good. Of course he will have to get back up to speed. Then he has to work really hard to dislodge one of the players with the shirt at the minute. It will be good to have him out training and back in contention.”
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