Read David's full thoughts on the game
- David Wagner reviews Sheff Wed defeat
- Head Coach sees lots to like in first 70 mins
- Wagner also knows there is room to improve
Huddersfield Town’s Head Coach David Wagner described today’s 3-1 defeat at Sheffield Wednesday as a ‘first step’ for his side.
The work put in on the training pitch during Wagner’s first fortnight at the Club was evident and the Terriers actually took the lead through Sean Scannell, but the Owls soon equalised and the Terriers lost control of the fixture in the final 20 minutes.
“We had what we expected; some ups and downs in our game,” David told htafc.com post-match.
“I think the first 45 minutes was OK. We were very strong in defence and kept the crowd quiet; I think each side had one chance.
“We scored a very good goal in the second half; after losing the ball, we won it again and it was a good centre from Kyle (Dempsey) in his first game as a left back today, along with a nice finish from Scannell.
“After this, the game picked up speed and we had a very good chance for Emyr to score the second goal. We missed it, but he created a very good situation with Scannell.
“We also had to take Deano (Whitehead) off the pitch, which was not what we wanted in that situation; he is a man who can change the speed of a game. However, he would have been sent off on his next foul and we could not let that happen.
“It went 1-1 and in the last 20 minutes, Sheffield Wednesday were much stronger than we were. Because of this, I think it was fair that they won the game – although maybe by one goal too many.
“Everybody is disappointed about the result – me too – but there was something different in the performance. The first 70 minutes was good, but we have to work on the last 20 and bring the performance over a longer time.”
David saw enough at Hillsborough to know that his players have the ability to improve – and where they need to.
He continued: “As I said two weeks ago, our style needs unbelievably good fitness. We are on the way to get this. In the last 20 minutes we lost a bit of control on the game, losing the ball too easily. We were no longer able to use the ball and that is something we have to work on.
“I was satisfied with the first 70 minutes because we saw a lot of things we’ve tried to bring to the pitch, we scored and defended well.
“There are a lot of things we can work with. It was a good game for our experience and to find some good and bad things that we have to work on. We spoke at the beginning about needing time, but I think this was a first step.
“We now have new information on how everybody reacts in a game, with the crowd and a bit more pressure. It is different to the training pitch. In my opinion we saw a lot of good things, but also things we have to work on.
“We like work! This is our job and what we do. The team has done that before today and will do it in the future, for sure.”
Wagner left Jason Davidson, Jamie Paterson and James Vaughan out of the match day 18, explaining that completing training is a prerequisite to be involved. That led to Kyle Dempsey’s deployment as a temporary left back.
“We had to find a left back in our squad over the last two weeks, because Jason (Davidson) wasn’t with us. Nobody knew how he would come back from the Australian national team and we only worked with him once on Friday. I spoke with him and his legs are not fresh after the travelling.
“I said on Thursday that Ben (Chilwell) has only been with the team for two days and is still learning the names of the squad.
“As a result, Kyle was the man we chose. He did it well in training; we’ve seen in two weeks he’s a talented football player. He wasn’t afraid and did it for us today. Of course it is not the position he has experienced in the past, but it was for today and in my opinion he did OK.
“The other players were not left out on quality; it depended on how they were able to work in the last two weeks.
“Jamie (Paterson) only practised with the team on Thursday and Friday and for our style we need very good fitness. He wasn’t able to have this and we will build it up next week.
“The same applies for James Vaughan. We had around 15 training sessions in two weeks and I think he made five or six.
“They are important players for us, but we must build up their fitness so they can help us.”
Wagner reserved his final words for the Town fans in attendance on the afternoon:
“They were perfect. It was good to see the supporters that came with us to Sheffield, but we could not make them happy with our result. Hopefully they saw that we played a good 70 minutes and everybody recognised we’ve brought something new to our game.”