Getty Images

Stoke City imploding after 3-0 loss to Wigan

Leave a comment

Manager Gary Rowett laid out to the media details of a club that is eating itself alive from the inside out.

Having been relegated from the Premier League last season, Stoke City is winless in its first four matches of Championship play. Their most recent loss came in devastating fashion, conceding a pair of penalties and losing 3-0 to newly promoted Wigan.

[ MORE: Premier League power rankings ]

“It was weak and pathetic and if you do that you’re going to lose games of football,” Rowett said after the match. “When you’re not winning games everybody gets a bit edgy and frustrated. We’ve got to take collective responsibility, it’s no good fighting between ourselves.”

Rowett’s final phrase referred to an incident at halftime that took place in the Stoke City locker room, with goalkeeper Jack Butland, captain Ryan Shawcross and winger James McClean all shouted at each other during the break. “Reputations now mean nothing,” Rowett said after the match. “I’ve got to start picking the team on which players deserve to be in, not which players have played in the Premier League for 10 years.”

New Stoke signing Tom Ince blasted two shots both over the bar in the opening 15 minutes, before Wigan took the lead on the first of two Will Grigg penalties. Ince had some brutal words for the team after the match. “We must man up, grow some balls, put ourselves on the line and actually show some hunger to put things right. We have to make this a horrible place to come.”

For Wigan, American international Antonee Robinson would have picked up an assist had Nick Massey not been fouled, leading to Grigg’s his second penalty.

Season Preview: Can Wagner’s Huddersfield Town defend its way to safety?

Leave a comment

Premier League titles: 0 (Three top tier titles from 1923-26)

FA Cups: 1 (1922)

League Cups: 0

[ STREAM: Watch every PL match live ]


Top Three after three match days and when the calendar hit 2018, Huddersfield Town’s first season in the Premier League took a dramatic downturn the rest of the way. The Terriers’ 16th place finish was just four points clear of the drop zone, and Town’s minus-30 goal differential was worse than all but one team in top flight (Stoke City).

There were bright spots for German-American manager David Wagner, though, and he’s bringing all of them back including outstanding goalkeeper Jonas Lossl. He’ll have to find more goals, though, as Town’s 28-goal season was the joint-worst in the Premier League (Swansea City). What’s worse? Eleven of those 28 goals came in three matches, and there is no real significant transfer yet to expect a major growth in output.


Huddersfield Town will finish top-half because… Consistency and familiarity from its defenders and goalkeeper, now full-time members of Town, allow the group to Burnley its way up the table. Erik Durm and Juninho Bacuna will have to be big hits

Huddersfield Town will be relegated because… The goals don’t come, and the reliance on too few difference makers in the midfield wears down its corps. Opening with Chelsea and Man City sink the Terriers after two weeks, and three Top Four contenders in its final five matches hamper their chances to finish strong.

Best possible XI:

Lossl

Hadergjonaj — Schindler — Kongolo — Jorgensen — Durm

Hogg — Mooy — Williams

Pritchard — Mounie

Transfers In: Terrence Kongolo ($22 million, Monaco), Adama Diakhaby ($11 million, Monaco), Ramadan Sobhi ($7 million, Stoke City), Florent Hadergjonaj ($6 million, Ingolstadt), Jonas Lossl ($3 million, Mainz), Ben Hamer (free, Leicester City), Juninho Bacuna ($3 million, Groningen), Erik Durm (free, Borussia Dortmund)

Transfers Out: Tom Ince ($12.5 million, Stoke City), Rob Green (free, Chelsea).

Ranking their offseason: B+

Town was fortunate to survive the drop last season by any number of metrics, and aren’t taking too many risks in addressing their holes. Kongolo and Lossl were two of their best players last season, and making loans permanent was a necessary move. Versatile Erik Durm is a World Cup winner who could prove to be an all-timer of a move. Two interesting  bets come in the form of Bacuna, Diakhaby and Sobhi, who could succeed with more consistent roles than they had in their past clubs.

Star player: Aaron Mooy — The baldheaded midfielder has risen with a rocket since signing with Manchester City a few years ago, and his four-goal, three-assist campaign saw Town go 5W-1L in matches he registered a goal or assist.

Coach’s Corner: Wagner won the UEFA Cup as a player with Schalke before scrapping his way through to promotion with Town. He’s liked by his players and adept at tactics. The questions are whether he’s added enough players to compete should no more help arrived by Thursday’s transfer deadline.

PST Predicts: Another season of ups and downs which sees Town mostly struggling to stay above the drop zone.

Huddersfield Town 1-0 Watford: Ince strikes late

Leave a comment
  • Three total shots on target
  • Ince puts Town’s only one in the goal
  • Terries now seven clear

Tom Ince‘s stoppage time goal was Huddersfield Town’s only shot on target, but they won’t care after picking up a potentially huge 1-0 win over Watford at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday.

The win boosts the Terriers into 14th place, seven points clear of the drop. Watford is in 12th, three ahead of Town.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Town’s Rajiv Van la Parra had the first real chance of the game deflected over the bar for what would be an unsuccessful corner kick.

Abdoulaye Doucoure had a strong strike deflected past the reach of Jonas Lossl, who might’ve just had the post covered as the ball skittered into the side netting.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Huddersfield Town 0-0 Swansea City: 10-man Swans hold

Mike Egerton/PA via AP
Leave a comment
  • Ayew sent off, 11′
  • Swans hold strong for point
  • Town four clear of 18th

Swansea City played with 10 men for 79 minutes but still collected another point for Carlos Carvalhal in a scoreless draw with sputtering Huddersfield Town at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday.

Swans sit 14th with 31 points, while Town is 16th with the same total but eight goals worse differential.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Jordan Ayew went studs-up into Jonathan Hogg to give the hosts a man advantage after barely more than 10 minutes, and Town dominated the proceedings over 45 minutes but failed to find a goal.

The pressure kept coming, but Carlos Carvalhal’s Swans stayed tight. Huddersfield registered chance after chance, but couldn’t press their collective foot down on the long neck of the Swans.

Lukasz Fabianski could only watch as Tom Ince headed off the bar at the edge of stoppage time, perhaps Town’s best opportunity to capitalize on its advantage over 80 minutes.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

FA Cup replays: Swans hang 8, Huddersfield needs ET

Simon Galloway/PA via AP
Leave a comment

The pair of Premier League combatants contesting FA Cup replays on Tuesday combined for 12 goals, but one posted their big number in much more convincing fashion.

[ PL PLAYBACK: What’s wrong with Chelsea? ]

The other match saw a League One side advance to the fifth round.

Swansea City 8-1 Notts County

Carlos Carvalhal’s Welsh good vibes continue to pile up as Swans battered Kevin Nolan‘s League Two promotion hopefuls at the Liberty Stadium, setting up a visit to Sheffield Wednesday.

Chelsea loanee Tammy Abraham sandwiched first half goals around a pair from Nathan Dyer, and Kyle Naughton and Wayne Routledge both netted in the second half before Tom Carroll made it seven.

Twenty-year old Daniel James scored his first goal for Swans. Abraham also had an assist, while Luciano Narsingh had assists on the three others first half goals.

Noor Husin scored County’s goal.

Birmingham City 1-1 (1-4 aet) Huddersfield Town

Aaron Mooy found Steve Mounie at the start of extra time to push Huddersfield Town into the fifth round and a visit from Manchester United. Town split the PL season series with United, but won 2-1 at the John Smith’s Stadium on Oct. 21 before losing to the Red Devils at the weekend.

Rajiv Van la Parra and Tom Ince also scored in extra time for David Wagner‘s Premier League visitors, who controlled the ball and chances but went to extra time without having put a ball in the goal.

England U-20 veteran Che Adams put the Blues ahead in the 52nd minute, but Marc Roberts posted an own goal to level the score in the 60th.

Rochdale 1-0 Millwall

The League One hosts roll onto the fifth round after Ian Henderson scored in the 53rd minute. Rochdale will meet either Spurs or Newport County.