Jonathan Hogg has the backing of a former manager as he bids to emerge from the shadow of injured midfielder Dean Whitehead.
Hogg, 27, returned to the Huddersfield Town starting line-up in place of in-form Whitehead, who faces up to eight weeks out with a knee injury.
Though the result against Bristol City wasn’t what he wanted, Hogg stepped up to take the holding role Whitehead had made his own this season.
Saturday’s visit of the Robins saw Hogg meet up with old boss Steve Cotterill, the man who took him on loan to Portsmouth from Aston Villa in 2011.
As the old allies shook hands after the game at the John Smith’s Stadium, Cotterill said: “Glad to see you playing. Keep your place in the team. Give Whitehead the elbow!”
After the brief trip down memory lane Hogg admitted he had his work cut out to replace Whitehead.
“Deano’s a big loss because he’s been in blinding form but I am more than happy to fill his boots for the team,” he said.
“To be honest when he got injured I said to him: ‘thanks a lot!’ He’s been our best player and his are big boots to fill.”
Hogg has had an injury-hit season so far and said: “I got an injury which kept me out for four or five weeks and then when I was fit again Dean was on great form. Now I have the chance to put my stamp on it.”
Hogg is now working hard on the new style of football introduced by head coach David Wagner and admitted: “It was difficult to start with but the style he has brought is going to be more attractive for the fans.
“I think we will get more goals, we might concede more, but we are going to be attacking more than we were last season.
“That’s what the fans want to see - more goals and more entertainment.”
Conceding two set-piece goals, as Town did against Bristol City, wasn’t acceptable, however.
“It was sloppy, so sloppy,” said Hogg. “We spoke about it before the game, about set plays.
“We know most of their goals come from crosses and to concede two goals from crosses and set plays is not good enough. We need to stop that. Goals like that are so easy to stop.”
Hogg wasn’t making excuses about conditions on the field but said: “It was freezing. The more you ran around the colder you got.
“You were so wet and were running into the wind. I have never been so cold in a football match.”
Hogg said Town deserved at least a point from the City game and added: “We hit the post and missed a penalty and had enough chances.
“If we create the same number of chances against Rotherham on Tuesday we will put two or three past them, or at least I hope we will!
“The next three or four games we need to pick up some big points. We thought we would have picked up points against Bristol City, we backed ourselves for that, but it wasn’t to be on the day.
“We must be positive and move on.”