A true enigma, the Curaçao international showed flashes of his best and his worse and a whole lot in between during his tenure with the Terriers.
So with his departure now confirmed, let’s attempt to break down his time with Huddersfield.
Positive start to life in West Yorkshire
Juninho Bacuna arrived at the John Smith’s Stadium ahead of their second campaign in the Premier League in the summer of 2018. The window will be infamously remembered by Huddersfield fans for their record-breaking spending, in a window where they got a lot wrong.
Bacuna was one of the few shrewd pieces of business they actually made in that window and while Huddersfield bowed out of the Premier League at the end of that campaign, the midfielder made his mark with some classy displays, including a coming of age performance away at West Ham United, showing his undoubted potential in the world’s biggest league.
It was the following season where the very best of Bacuna would be shown more often, under the tutelage of Danny Cowley. The former Lincoln City boss took on the challenge of getting the best out of Bacuna and for the start at least, he succeeded.
The 2019-20 season would see Bacuna record a career-best of six league goals, three of which came in consecutive games in October, Cowley’s first full month in charge of the Terriers. A streak that demonstrated his prowess and his capability to hit a rich vein of form, which he sustained for a whole month.
He would fail to hit the heights for the rest of this campaign however and after the shock departure of Cowley at the end of the season, questions started to arise about his future with the club. Nothing concrete would happen though and Bacuna was integrated back into the team under new coach Carlos Corberan.
Last season Bacuna was plagued by inconsistency, yet he still managed five league goals, proving to be one of the Terriers’ leading marksmen yet again, while also boasting four assists.
But while Bacuna once again proved himself as a talisman, the majority of his goal contributions would once again come in a purple patch of form. Only further revealing his inconsistency and reliability issues.
While the spells of inconsistency are just about equitable with the brilliance, Bacuna still made his mark in Huddersfield, proving to be a talismanic figure in what has been a grim spell for the Terriers. Bacuna certainly divided opinion among the Huddersfield faithful, but you cannot dispute the impact he made in West Yorkshire.
Can Gerrard get the best out of him?
His departure has a bittersweet feeling to it, a sense of sadness that he won’t be able to illuminate the John Smith’s Stadium with his occasional dazzling displays, is mixed with a sense of relief that the Terriers no longer have to persevere with the painfully frustrating moments where frankly it looked like Bacuna longed to be elsewhere.
When in full swing, the Dutchman is capable of producing emphatic moments of solo brilliance and Rangers boss Steven Gerrard will now face the challenge of bringing consistency to his game, something that never quite happened in West Yorkshire.
It won’t take Bacuna long to make an impression in Scotland and if he can hit the heights he’s capable of, Rangers will have pulled off a masterstroke in bringing the midfielder to Ibrox and bolstered their midfield options significantly in their bid to retain their Scottish title.
There’s a fire burning inside Bacuna waiting to be fuelled, the task of Gerrard and co is to give him drive and purpose, something he seemed to be without towards the end of his time in West Yorkshire.
In conclusion, Juninho Bacuna goes to Scotland with ability, undoubted ability at that. But as Huddersfield have realised that only makes half a player, to have a whole player Rangers need to hope they can find his application.
If you can get on the same wavelength as Juninho Bacuna you will reap the rewards.