Aaron Mooy looks hungry to get back to his best when Huddersfield Town visit Stoke City.
That’s the training-round message from head coach David Wagner following a lethargic performance by the Australian midfielder against West Ham United.
The 27-year-old Mooy is generally the man who makes Town tick, but his influence was stagnated in the 4-1 defeat by the Hammers – and Wagner admits it told!
“I agree he was not at his best last Saturday but that is not a major problem for me because he is human and has played a lot of minutes,” explained Wagner, who could well hand a first start at No10 to £10m signing Alex Pritchard.
“We tried to give him freshness back in his legs when we played in the Cup at Bolton.
“He had some days off to catch up some days off which the players who were not on international duty had had.
“It didn’t work for the West Ham game but hopefully it will work on Saturday and in future that he gets some energy.”
Some fans believe Mooy has become a little jaded of late with all his international travel finally having an impact on his matchday form.
Mooy is a regular in the Socceroos senior squad and it’s a mercy that in the next international break in March, the Australian has to travel only to Norway.
Wagner says he has been left to his own devices in training this week and has been fine.
“He has had a usual week, nothing extra-ordinary,” confirmed Wagner, who has fit-again Phil Billing in mind for the FA Cup clash with Birmingham City.
“If you ask me was he through the roof or below the par in this training week, it was a good week from him, like from the whole group.
“He, as well, has seen we have a lot of players in training and he has had what I would call a normal week for him.
“I agree, if Aaron is on his best we usually show a good team performance and we know we need him on his best. This is what we have to do to help him to be on his best on Saturday.”