Huddersfield Town midfielder Aaron Mooy believes the Terriers' survival push was so intense it was “like being on drugs.”
The Australia international, who is heading to this summer’s world cup, has been a key part of Town’s last two seasons – helping them earn promotion to the Premier League whilst on an initial loan deal from Manchester City, before signing permanently and helping drive the team towards survival.
“It’s just so intense”
Mooy delivered the assist for the goal which eventually kept the Terriers up – picking out Belgian striker Laurent Depoitre from the half way line to give Town an unlikely lead against Chelsea.
It was a nerve wracking day at Stamford Bridge, but Mooy admitted the stress and pressure throughout the entire season was intense, with each defeat, especially towards the latter stages of the season, felling like the curtain closing on their top-flight adventure.
Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald whilst training with the Australia squad, Mooy said: “It’s really dramatic. If you lose against a team around you it’s the end of the world."
“The fans think it’s the end of the world, you feel down, feel bad, but if you win it’s the opposite, its amazing. You have to try and balance it out a bit. Its not healthy. Basically [it’s like being] on drugs.”
“It’s just so intense but it makes you a stronger person. That’s where you want to be – one of the best leagues in the world, if not the best league, and that’s what it takes,” he continued.
“I was mentally drained”
Since joining the West Yorkshire side, Mooy has become the focal point of the Terrier’s midfield – racking up 89 appearances over just two seasons.
After an extended season during the 2016/17 campaign due to Huddersfield’s successful play offs, Mooy then travelled to Russia for the Confederations Cup with Australia, where he played two matches for the Socceroos.
So, despite his tiring schedule, the 27-year-old believes it was the intensity of the survival push that was more draining than last year, rather than the amount if matches.
“I don’t know if it’s physical. When your mind is fresh you feel good in a game. When your mind gets tired, everything becomes harder and your body reacts to your mind,” Mooy explained.
“Maybe I was just in that part of the season where I was mentally drained. It was all new, all the pressure, the games. I never back away from that and I wanted to play as much as I could, and I only missed two games all season (due to injury),” he concluded.