REPORT: WIGAN ATHLETIC 0-1 TOWNNahki Wells scored his fourth goal in six matches and seventh of the campaign to secure a narrow win for Huddersfield Town over Wigan Athletic.
Town made seven changes from the draw against Blackburn Rovers, a match which was just 48 hours earlier, in which a last-gasp free-kick from Wells sealed an unbeaten December for David Wagner’s side.
Rajiv van La Parra missed this afternoon’s game at the DW Stadium due to an injury picked up against Blackburn, while Christopher Schindler was rested with Wagner choosing to utilise his full squad over the busy festive period.
The hosts began the stronger of the two teams, but Town soon settled into what was a first half without much substance for either side.
It took until 33 minutes for the first real chance of the game when Michael Jacobs almost got onto the end of Yanic Wildschut’s inviting cross – only to be denied by Tareiq Holmes-Dennis who headed away for a corner.
Cheered on by almost 4,000 away supporters, the Terriers dominated the early exchanges of the second half. However, Wigan’s potential threat on the counter – particularly through Wildschut – was evident throughout.
Joe Lolley came off the bench for his first involvement since coming off injured at Villa Park in August against Aston Villa. Lolley was soon followed on by Dean Whitehead who replaced Phillip Billing – subbed off after suffering a knock.
Both Wells and Elias Kachunga had very few opportunities to attack in the final third, with the home side’s deep backline proving a struggle for Town to break down.
Martin Cranie put in another impressive performance, providing good support for his teammates down the right flank, whilst keeping the potentially dangerous Wildschut relatively quiet.
Wells scored the only goal of the game with just ten minutes remaining, reacting well to slot past Jussi Jaaskelainen who could only parry following a speculative 20 yard effort from Kachunga.
Wigan could have equalised when Danny Ward’s mis-kicked clearance left the Town goal vacant. Michael Jacobs reacted, but his effort was stopped by the well positioned Jon Gorenc Stanković.
Huddersfield has now won three straight away games for the first time since 2005.
Town’s team (4-2-3-1):
Danny Ward; Tareiq Holmes-Dennis, Jon Stanković, Mark Hudson (c), Martin Cranie; Aaron Mooy, Phil Billing (Dean Whitehead, 66‘); Harry Bunn (Joe Lolley, 58‘), Jack Payne (Michael Hefele, 90'), Elias Kachunga; Nahki Wells
Joel Coleman, Tommy Smith, Chris Löwe, Kasey Palmer
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