Chris Powell has hailed the return of his captain Mark Hudson – and explained why he is so important to Huddersfield Town.
Fit again after an ankle injury, the 33-year-old former Cardiff City centre-back is aiming for a first outing in six matches at Ipswich Town.
An unused substitute in Town’s last Championship match at Wolves, Hudson got important game time in the behind-closed doors friendly at Manchester City.
That has put him in line for a 48th appearance since his switch from South Wales in September of last season, after which Powell immediately installed him as skipper.
“Huddy has been a very good captain for me,” said Powell of the former Fulham, Crystal Palace and Charlton Athletic player, a £1m-plus signing for Cardiff in 2009.
“He is not only a good defender, but a good leader, and those skills are important on and off the pitch.
“Mark knows the game, he reads what is happening and he can organise as well as making his own contribution playing-wise.
“You need your players to take responsibility, and he is one who will.
“It’s good to have him back and hopefully he will help us move forward.”
Powell also had praise for stand-in skipper and midfielder Dean Whitehead, the summer signing from Middlesbrough who has led Town to their only two wins of the season so far.
“Dean has been excellent in Mark’s absence. He is another player who knows when we need to up tempo, and when we need to slow it down,” added Powell.
“He has an important role whether he has the armband or not. Yes, you need young legs and energy around them, but you do need experienced players.
“I can trust Mark and Dean not only to play their game, but to help others, and they are important to what we are trying to do here.”