23- year-old Huddersfield Town midfielder Jack Payne is currently on a year-long loan spell at League One side Oxford United, and has been a crucial member of the team, scoring two goals, and assisting a further 9.
He is the joint top League One player for assists so far this season, alongside Peterborough United’s Marcus Maddison.
Payne in “regular contact” with the Club
The attacking midfielder played 23 games in Town’s promotion-winning season, and is now in regular contact with the coaching staff who are keen to keep up to date with his progress: “All of the staff are good, they really want to keep up to date with how I’m doing.”
Payne says he “checks in with Mark Hudson a lot”, who became a member of Town’s coaching staff in the Summer, after being the skipper last season.
He further states that he is also in regular contact with members of the first- team squad: “I speak to the lads all the time and the first thing I do is check on the results.”
“Joe Lolley is my closest friend at the club, I speak to him a lot and a number of the lads. I was really happy for Joe coming on against Brighton, it was great to see. He’s got bags of talent and is a good lad as well, hopefully he continues to push for his place.”
Wagner wanted him to get plenty of game time
Payne explains that he’s “always had a good relationship with David. I spoke to him a lot last season, telling me what I needed to do to improve my game.”
The German manager sent Payne to Oxford with some advice: “The main thing he told me coming down here was to get out there and get games under me belt.” Payne says: “David wants me to create, get goals, assists, do everything I can to prove myself.”
Pep Clotet, Oxford United’s manager, revealed: “We know that Huddersfield, from what they tell me, are very focused on his development.”
Could Payne get a recall in the January Transfer Window?
With Town having some issues in the number 10 role this season, after Kasey Palmer’s injury; and new signing Abdelhamid Sabiri being more of a prospect for the future, recalling Payne would make perfect sense for the Terriers.
However, the midfielder is not expecting to play for his parent club at any point during this campaign: “I haven’t been told anything and I won’t get told anything, but as far as I know I expect to be here for the whole season.”
With Payne not likely to be one of Wagner’s starting XI at this stage, he told the Oxford Mail: “I came here to play every week and I’m happy here. Its important for me. I’m a footballer and I want to play every game I can – that’s what I’ve been doing here.”
“It’s great for me and I feel like I’m an important part of the team, which means a lot. I just hope we can be successful as a team, because then it will be perfect.”