Huddersfield v Manchester City Preview
As I have mentioned in my previous article, it is wise to choose your battle and always choose one that you have a better chance of winning. So this week, Huddersfield Town will travel to the land of the Citizen for a showdown at the Etihad. So any fan with a reasonable football IQ will know what to expect from this game.
Let me be the first to remind everyone that on paper, we have no chance against the best in England at the moment (I can imagine a Liverpool fan gazing at me and telling his friend “hold my beer!”).
Like any Huddersfield Town game, I’m going to sit back and enjoy every moment of it.
This was exactly the case back in May. With our relegation survival hanging in the balance, everything around us was like an “us against the world” type situation. With zero chance to gain anything out of that match, we pulled off the unthinkable at the Etihad. Gave us a huge raise in retaining our Premiership status. The rest is history.
That doesn’t mean that I’m not having any sense of optimism about this game, I still do. After all, the motto “No Limits” is what brought us this far, starting from Ian Holloway’s ill-fated prediction against us back in 2016.
Fast forward three months later, we’re back at the Etihad again.
Now it wouldn’t surprise me if David Wagner decides to keep the same line up. Since he has been accustomed of using 5-3-1-1 when facing bigger opposition. And the players you saw against Chelsea, were the best option for this formation. Though I do feel there is still room for some tweaking.
Should Ben Hamer keep his spot as Town’s No.1? For a backup goalkeeper, Hamer is indeed an immensely addition for the team. Last Saturday, when needed, he has shown to us what an excellence shot stopper he can be. Besides I can’t find fault in him on those three goals which we have conceded.
I still prefer to see Jonas Lössl back in the line-up to guard our post. After all, Lössl has more regular first team football action under his belt. Perhaps it was just Wagner’s way of reminding his goalkeepers that no place is guaranteed. Everyone has a fighting chance.
If I had to pick one changes from this line up, that would be to replace Chris Lowe with compatriot Erik Durm. Lowe had a decent performance in the Chelsea match. But in a game when you nothing to lose, I wouldn’t mind Wagner giving Durm a run out.
So what about those other signings during the summer?
I reckon much depends on how the game develops. If can we repeat what we have done to City in the first 45 minutes of last season, then Wagner might want to take his chances. Personally, if there was a moment I wish to Wagner unleashing the likes of Isaac Mbenza, Ramadan Sobhi and Adama Diakhaby, it’s this one. Playing against a club like Manchester City, can only do good in terms of the desire and determination for these young lads.
It wasn’t that long ago, the idea of just to mutter that we’re playing an away league game against City was unthinkable. So we might just be getting the biggest spank in our short Premiership history. It won’t change a fact how I view our season will develop. Like I said before, a season is defined by 38 league matches not just one or two games.
But at some point, to progress as a club, Wagner has to start thinking how to contend against clubs with a superior team. Rubbing shoulder with the big boys? We’ve done that last season. This time, let’s give them a muggy feeling when they playing against us.