Town Manager looks ahead to Saturday
- Chris Powell previews game at Cardiff City
- Town Manager expecting impact from new players
- Murphy, Hudson & Vaughan out
Huddersfield Town Manager Chris Powell says his team’s outlook and way of playing may be different when it takes on Cardiff City in Wales on Saturday.
The Town squad will have a slightly different look to it going into the latest Sky Bet Championship game, with five players awaiting a full Town debut after arriving at the club recently.
Two other regulars have been ruled out on Saturday, as Chris explained when addressing the press this morning.
“Sadly for Joe Murphy, he sustained an injury in training last week. That’s a real disappointment, because personally I believe he’s been really good. He wanted a run and just when it came, he is out.
“Young Lloyd (Allinson) is a diligent young goalkeeper, but going into this vital period of games we needed another ‘keeper to come in. The international break gave us time to get somebody in and we’ve got a good goalkeeper to help us in the short term in Jed Steer, who goes straight into the squad.
“Alongside your strikers, I believe the goalkeeper is the most vital position and I’m now comfortable going into these games.
“Elliott Ward also has a very good chance of playing because we’ve lost Mark Hudson, who came off at half time against QPR. That’s disappointing for him as Captain.
“We let Murray Wallace go out on loan to play some games and now we’ve brought Elliott in to cover Mark, who could be out for three to four weeks.
“He’s played at this level. He was Bournemouth’s number one centre back in the early part of last season until an injury kept him out for some time and now they have gone up, it’s been even harder for him to get back in.
“Having spoken to Eddie Howe, I know he’s still done everything they’ve asked during all the pre-season training and he’s ready for us.
“He’s very big! I actually played alongside him for West Ham and I’ve seen him develop as a young footballer. He’s remarkably calm and is a good user of the ball from the back, plus he’s good in both boxes. I hope he comes in and adds to us.”
Powell also confirmed that striker James Vaughan has picked up a calf injury and is unavailable for selection:
“The transfer window closed and James is still here, but then on the following Thursday – two days later on 3 September – he trained, didn’t finish the session and now he is injured. At the moment he is not fit enough for me to contemplate having him around the squad.”
On the impact his new recruits can have, Chris continued:
“I’m pleased they have come in. We’ve got some quality there, which they need to show.
“Emyr (Huws) had the injury last season that kept him out for Wigan before getting another knock in pre-season, but now he’s in a good place. I always know our players are doing well when they survive Hoggy kicking them in training!
“He’s got good quality; he’s a good set piece taker, is a good passer of the ball and likes to shoot from distance. He also offers balance as he has a good left foot. I’m looking forward to seeing him play, because he is my type of midfielder. He should lend to us creating chances, scoring goals and winning games.
“I don’t want to put too much pressure on him as he has been out for a while. He hasn’t played many minutes, so we are going to be careful with him. It might be that he makes a difference from the bench initially.
“We have a number 10 in Jamie Paterson and the likes of Muzzy Carayol, who has raw pace; it’s quite frightening. I have really good options from the start and also from the bench, which I felt we needed. I will use them.”
As well as the new signings, Powell confirmed that 19 year-old striker Flo Bojaj will travel with the squad to Wales after his first appearance on the First Team bench in the last game against QPR:
“I’ve included Flo recently as he’s been doing the business for the Under-21s, which is what I want to see.
“I went to the Under-21 game at Crystal Palace and he scored a very good goal. The squad prepared like the First Team does, staying overnight, and I was very proud watching them succeed under Frank (Bunn).
“Flo is one of a few players who has trained with us and will travel to Cardiff.”
The first five games of the Sky Bet Championship season haven’t heralded a win and Powell is keen to see his side improve in two key areas:
“We’ve created quite a bit this season and got into the penalty box a lot more than every team we’ve played, but we haven’t been clinical enough; whether that’s the end product, a cross, a pass or a decision. Our approach play has been good, but that has been our downfall. You need to score goals to win games.
“Defensively, we know we conceded too many last year. That continued in pre-season and that has been our mantra. In the season we’ve been better, but we still need a clean sheet. We’re demanding more from the players.
“We’ve had five games and now we need to put it all together. We have done in fits and starts in every game we’ve played, but now it is time to do it over a longer period and get three points. You need wins to push up the table.”
The Manager wants to see that come together when the team plays at the Cardiff City Stadium this weekend:
“We want our first win. We’ve had time to prepare, get a few players in and get one or two players up to speed; the likes of Sean Scannell, who has been nowhere near up to speed until now. We’ve put good work in, so the players and team should benefit from it.
“We cannot be on the back foot. We know we’re on the road, but we need points. We came through bad spells last season and I have no doubt we will come through it again now.
“We might be slightly different in our outlook and in the way we play. We have lost Jacob (Butterfield), but we do have width and pace and we will have to utilise some other qualities in the team.
“People need to step up – myself included. We’ve talked to the players and they are under no illusions as to what is needed at Cardiff. It’ll be tough across the border, but that’s always the case in the Championship and we’ll be ready.”
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