Huddersfield Town new boy Tom Ince celebrated his debut by scoring the winner as David Wagner’s men beat Sky Bet League Two outfit Accrington Stanley 1-0 on a sunny afternoon in the North-West.
The match was the first instalment of seven in pre-season, as the club look to prepare for what is expected to be an incredibly tough first Premier League campaign after their shock promotion from the Sky Bet Championship last term.
Eight new signings given inaugural run-outs
Wagner decided to go for the popular choice among managers for friendlies by fielding two different line-ups in each half, with both being of similar quality so that every squad member got a fair amount of match fitness under their belts.
Five fresh faces were in action during the first period as Jonas Lössl, Mathias Jørgensen, Scott Malone, Danny Williams and new club-record signing Steve Mounié looked to impress the fans in attendance.
Recently-bought attacking duo Tom Ince and Laurent Depoitre were on show in the second half before returning loanee Kasey Palmer was introduced later on, replacing Mark Hudson with just under 20 minutes left.
Tom Ince already off the mark
The first-half had everything you’d expect from two teams just coming back from their holidays. Limited chances were created and new ‘keeper Jonas Lössl had very little to do, but was showing off fine distribution skills and nearly set up Mounié. The exciting striker got on the end of the long ball over Stanley’s defence, but chipped his effort just past the wrong side of the post.
Proceedings continued to be close into the second lot of 45 minutes with the new batch of players taking the field, but the deadlock was finally broken 10 minutes after the break courtesy of Tom Ince. Clever work down the right flank allowed him to come inside and find a bit of space on the edge of the box, before unleashing an effort underneath Aaron Chapman in between the sticks.
The England U21 international is expected to play a big part in the Terriers’ fight for survival across the course of the 2017/2018 top flight campaign, and will be delighted that he’s already contributing to goals. Town’s next warm-up fixture sees them travel to another North-West side in Bury, where Ince will be hoping to make a similar impact.