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Interviews

SIMON CHARLTON ON BREAKING INTO TOWN’S FIRST TEAM

19 May 2020

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Simon Charlton recalls his time at Huddersfield Town

- Simon Charlton looked back at being offered an apprenticeship by Town
- Left-back on his move to Southampton
- Charlton admitted mixed emotions when playing against Huddersfield Town

Former Huddersfield Town defender Simon Charlton looked back at his time with the Terriers and the valuable skills he learnt as an apprentice at the Club.

After finishing his second and last year away at Bobby Robson’s Lilleshall National Football School, Simon got the offer he’d been dreaming of as a youngster, the opportunity to join Town on an apprenticeship.

“When I got back home, I had three or four options to join other clubs, but Huddersfield Town had put me forward for the school, and I could live with my parents, so it was an easy decision really.”

Charlton was a product of the Club’s apprenticeship scheme and he values that experience as a vital part of his success.

“I came up through the apprenticeship programme and I did my fair share of what we used to do back in the day; sweeping floors, cleaning boots, putting the kit out for the First Team players, it taught me discipline and I think that young players sometimes miss out on that now.”

He still remembers his first appearance for Town and how a certain comment from manager Eoin Hand meant a lot to him.

“Eoin Hand brought me on for the last 10 minutes away at Brentford and I remember playing quite well, I flicked a ball away at the back post and he said to me ‘I didn’t know you could jump that high’; it was the first real compliment I got from a manager, so I’ll always cherish it.”

After four years, and making over 100 appearances for Huddersfield Town, the versatile Charlton made the move down to Premier League side Southampton for a reported fee of £250,000. He recalls how the move came about and how he adapted to top-tier football.

“I remember the mammoth journey down in my Ford Fiesta, and at that time, contracts were done in 20 minutes, so I signed there and then.

“At first it was tough; I remember being given the run-around in my first game against Everton. It took about five or six games but after that you get up to speed and it’s brilliant.”

During that period, Simon came against Huddersfield Town and admitted he had mixed feelings ahead of the game.

“It was my first game playing in what was the new stadium back in 1994, so I was really looking forward to it, we managed to edge the game 1-0 and I got an assist which felt good.”


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