Mark Robins hailed Jon Stead’s contribution as a Huddersfield Town side missing Middlesbrough-bound midfielder Adam Clayton drew 2-2 with Newcastle at the John Smith’s Stadium in their final friendly before Saturday’s home Championship opener against Bournemouth.

Clayton is today expected to complete his transfer to Teesside for a reported initial £1.5m, potentially rising to £2m with add-ons.

Town have been linked with Middlesbrough midfielder Jacob Butterfield, while manager Robins is considering making an offer to Republic of Ireland centre-back Sean St Ledger, who is a free agent after leaving Leicester and featured as a trialist last night, when 5,896 watched, including 1,473 from Newcastle.

With Robins fielding different sides for each 45 minutes, St Ledger, 29, played in the second half alongside Stead, who took over the captain’s armband from Lee Peltier and scored the goal which put Town 2-1 ahead before Remy Cabella’s leveller.

Stead ended last season out of favour and on loan at Bradford, but Robins, who in the first half saw on-loan Nottingham Forest midfielder Radi Majewski score his first Town goal to cancel out Emmanuel Riviere’s opener, says this can be a new start.

 

“Everyone here has the chance to impress, and I was delighted for Jon. He got a good goal, but also worked his socks off and produced a good performance, providing us with a valuable outlet,” he said.

“He was disappointed with how last season panned out, but he has never moaned or groaned, just got his head down and worked hard, and if he can produce that level of performance consistently, he will be in the reckoning.

“This was a good work-out for the squad. I didn’t want to stretch anyone, and I wanted to give as many as possible the chance of a run-out against Premier League opposition., and we did okay.”