Dean Whitehead says attention to small details is behind Huddersfield Town’s big push to the top of the Championship.

The experienced former Middlesbrough midfielder made his third appearance of the season and 38th for the club in all as David Wagner’s side regained the leadership by beating Rotherham United 2-1 at the John Smith’s Stadium on Tuesday.

WATCH: Dean Whitehead speaks ahead of Huddersfield Town's trip to Ipswich Town

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Now the 34-year-old, who rejected the chance of a transfer to Rotherham during the summer, is hoping to tackle an Ipswich Town side moulded by his former Sunderland gaffer Mick McCarthy.

Whitehead played in the McCarthy-managed Sunderland team who won promotion to the Premier League back in 2005.

The Oxford United product who has also spent time at Stoke City has been around long enough to avoid rash predictions about winning a third career promotion (he also helped Sunderland go up from the Championship under Roy Keane in 2007).

But he’s happy with he start made by Wagner’s side, who have taken 22 points from a possible a possible 30.

“It’s down to a lot of hard work and the manager and his staff getting a lot of those little details right,” said Whitehead.

“His methods have been the same ever since coming into the club (last November), but obviously it was always going to take a bit of time to impose his ideas.

“We are getting great advice on fitness work, nutrition and how to rest properly and it’s all playing a part.

“It was a big pre-season for us. We were back early, the bulk of our new signings were made early and we gelled as a group early.

“The work we did was very good as well, and that has continued into the season.

“Our fitness levels are right up there, and that’s so important because of the way the manager likes to play.

“There are no half measures, every training session is full-on, full-throttle, just like the way we play in a match.

“You’re not expected to leave anything behind on the pitch - or the training field.

“Every training session is important, but every training session is also an opportunity to impress the manager.”

There is no shortage of competition for the two midfield berths.

Whitehead came in for Jonathan Hogg to play alongside on-loan Manchester City man Aaron Mooy against both Barnsley and Rotherham (he was used from the bench against Queens Park Rangers).

Wagner also has Ivan Paurevic and Philip Billing to call on and Whitehead added: “Competition is fierce all over the team.

“That’s the way it should be, and while we all want to play, we understand the situation.”

Town head to Ipswich hunting an eighth win in game number 11 of the league campaign.

Injury-hit Ipswich are 13th and without a goal in their last three games.

But Whitehead says Town will have to work hard if they to earn all three points.

“I think most people know what a Mick McCarthy side is all about,” he said.

“They will get the ball forward quickly, they will play for second balls, they will get balls into the box whenever they can.

“And they will be stubborn defensively - Mick’s sides seldom give much away.

“We may have to be patient, something I think we are getting better at, and we will have to mix it physically.”