Huddersfield Town have a crucial game away at Everton this weekend, with David Wagner’s team hoping to end a run of four consecutive away losses in the league.
Everton have recently appointed Sam Allardyce as their new manager and come into the game on the back of a resounding 4-0 win against West Ham in the week. Huddersfield, by stark contrast, lost 5-0 to Arsenal. A defeat which follows on from losses to Manchester City and Bournemouth.
Wagner remains calm
Wagner tried to stay positive whilst speaking about recent games, “I am very calm about everything that has happened over the last three games; we are very humble and very calm about what’s happened so far.”
The American head coach has had a reasonably successful start to his Premier League career but is still keen to improve. “We are learning every single second as a team not in the top flight for 45 years. We learn, and it’s still very exciting.”
The failure to score a single away goal since August is worrying and Wagner insists part of this learning process needs to focus on taking chances. “We have to do better in front of the opponent’s goal and we have to concede fewer goals.”
An almost obvious statement, however it shows the emphasis the coach places on the basics, as well as implementing his own pressing philosophy. “I have no concerns about three games in six days because my players are top fit and top professionals,” claimed Wagner who has conditioned his players for such busy periods in the football calendar.
Gulf in class between Premier League and Championship
Huddersfield had a very strong start to the season but now find themselves tied for points with Everton, who have struggled, only goal difference favours The Toffees. “I don’t think there have been any big surprises so far, but every single opponent in the Premier League is harder than 22 of the opponents we met in the Championship last season,” said Wagner.
“You cannot compare the quality of the Premier League with the Championship. It’s impossible. Everyone is fighting to keep us here for as long as we can.”
Allardyce’s Everton wont surprise us
While being questioned about the arrival of Allardyce to Everton Wagner said, “tactically it isn’t usually nice when the manager of an opponent changes just before you play them but because it’s Sam Allardyce and everyone is aware of how he likes to play, the problem isn’t as big.”
The Terriers’ manager certainly gave the impression that Huddersfield are keen to take all three points from the game, “we are focused on ourselves, on our performance and on collecting three points.”
Steve Mounié is expected to continue his run in the first team after his injury, “game time is crucial for Steve, he had a very good training week and I think he played on a high level against Arsenal for 60-70 minutes. It’s important that this continues.”
Wagner also spoke about gave time scales for when certain players should return, “we expect Michael Hefele and Jon Stanković to be back this month and Phillip Billing back in January.”
On loan Chelsea midfielder Kasey Palmer will continue to be monitored, “we have training this afternoon and then we will make a decision,” said an optimistic Wagner.