At the start of the season, David Wagner spoke about wanting two players for every position, something most Huddersfield Town fans found difficult to envisage, as we’ve been thin on the ground in previous campaigns and susceptible to injuries.
Fast forward to two thirds of the way through the 2016/17 season though and you’d be hard pushed to find anyone involved with Town who doesn’t believe we now have a squad rather than just a starting 11.
We’re currently suffering from a number of injuries – Jonathan Hogg, Kasey Palmer, Sean Scannell and Harry Bunn – and with games now coming thick and fast with regular weekend and midweek games, it’s something that can take its toll on a team.
However, the way Wagner has rotated the team throughout the season has allowed the more regular starters to stay fresh while still keeping everyone sharp and match fit if they are needed to be called upon.
There is no greater example of this than the three games in the past week – Rotherham United, Manchester City and Reading FC – with twenty different players being involved (which obviously doesn’t include any of the four injured players I’ve mentioned).
This alone highlights the strength and depth the squad has to offer, particularly amplified for the match against a normally free scoring Manchester City side that boasted the likes of Jesus Navas, Nolito and Sergio Aguero with even more firepower entering the match later in the game in the form of the substitutes Leroy Sane and Kevin De Bruyne.
Wagner made a number of alterations to the starting 11 including four changes to the back five, compared to the previous starting line-up, who along with the rest of the team, managed to do what most Premier League and European teams have failed to do this season – stop them from scoring.
Town fans are now coming to realise what the management have been saying for a while – there is no 'first-team', just a large squad of very capable individuals that can all be interchanged and deliver the performances required to continue this fantastic season.
One issue I was always concerned with having a large squad was the ability to keep so many great players happy and cohesive when you can’t play them all.
While it’s easier to do this when you’re winning, like Town are, Wagner seems to have managed to mould them into a tight-knit group that are 100% supportive of each other.
This squad has more strength and depth than I’ve ever known; the camaraderie within it is clear and we have players due to return from injury for the final run in of games. With this is mind, Town look in a strong position to turn this great season into an amazing one.
Mark Habergham is a 31-year-old Online Acquisition Manager at The Yorkshire Building Society.
Mark first fell in love with Town when his Dad took him to Leeds Road at the age of eight-years-old and has been a dedicated season ticket holder ever since.