Despite teams such as Leicester City and Burnley, amongst others, proving an exception to the rule, I and David Wagner, still strongly believe that football is a squad game.
Throughout the season you need good quality players to call upon in the Christmas period when games come thick and fast, to call upon when there’s half an hour left and the match is 0-0, to call upon when players pick up injuries or suspensions. But what makes a good squad?
Depth. Good depth to the squad will provide more than sufficient cover for when players are unavailable. It will also create fierce competition for a place in the starting XI, which should bring with it a high standard of playing level.
Versatility. Having players who can play in more than one position can be extremely useful over the course of a season. It can also allow for more tactical flexibility when selecting the line-up and/or formation.
Youth. Developing young players with potential can have huge benefits. Young players brought through the youth system will fundamentally benefit from absorbing the culture of the club from an early age. They will form strong relationships with club staff, which should lead to better morale and easier man management. Not to mention the massive financial implications of a youth focus.
Personality. Positive personalities are worth their weight in gold. Players with the right attitude are advantageous both on and off the field. Players who pride themselves on professionalism can make fantastic tutors for young players. Similarly ambition, loyalty and determination and great qualities for squad members to have.
So how do Huddersfield Town measure up?
I think the squad is in great shape. There is certainly competition for places, with a lot players’ capable of playing in more than one position. We all know David Wagner prefers the 4-2-3-1 formation, but if things are quite working out he has the players to call upon to change that.
Having joined the Terriers from managing the BVB II, I don’t think the inclusion of youth was ever in doubt, having already had a debut to 16 year old Jordan Williams and regular inclusions for Rekeil Pyke.
Now I can only judge personalities on what I’ve seen through social media and such, and from what I have seen these lads look like a great bunch, with David Wagner himself, an infectiously happy and positive character.
Obviously there are other factors to consider, but I don’t want to ramble on too long and on that note.
Ooh to be a…