WITH five loanees in a squad that endured an uncertain time during the last few days of the summer transfer window, Huddersfield Town manager Chris Powell knew a spell away together could do the world of good.
Hence why the Terriers chief pushed for his players and staff to remain down south in between this week’s trips to Cardiff City and Charlton Athletic.
The club hierarchy readily agreed, which is how the Town squad found themselves enjoying a pleasant meal in a restaurant that stands in the shadow of Windsor Castle on Sunday night.
Training sessions took place at Bisham Abbey and the value of this bedding-in session was felt on Tuesday as Huddersfield claimed a first victory of the season at the seventh attempt against Powell’s former club Charlton.
The Terriers chief, who will resume talks with Shola Ameobi following the striker’s trial, said: “A caveat of having the loan players is that you look at what has gone on – the end of last season, losing Conor (Coady) in the window and then both Alex (Smithies) and Jacob (Butterfield) at the last knockings plus injuries to our skipper and Joe Murphy – and we have not been able to settle down.
“We brought in loan players, who are ours for whatever period. But we had to try to bed the team down.
“It was excellent that we were allowed to stay down this week by the club. It was a big help. People might say it was about bonding but we didn’t go out and do what most people do.
“We did go into Windsor, went to a nice Italian restaurant by the castle on Sunday night as a group. We also had a walk through the town.
“Little things like that can help. It was good for us to have that time together and I really hope it has helped us. What is important now is to follow the Charlton win with another three points. Back-to-back victories is massive in a week.”
Three points finally being put on the board has raised morale among supporters who had been left frustrated by the summer sales.
When asked if terrace opinion swayed his thinking at any stage, Powell replied: “No, not at all.
“I have always said I recognise that fans have a voice and opinion and rightly so. But it never sways me in what I have to do because I am not managing them. I am managing the club and have to make those decisions.
“I will always speak to the fans and front up. It is their club. They will be here long after I have gone and plenty of other managers. That is how football is. I can assure them I will do the best job I can to make things work.”