DAVID WAGNER insists survival remains the only target for Huddersfield Town despite his side starting 2018 firmly on course for their highest league finish in more than 60 years.
The Terriers head to Leicester City today sitting 11th in the top flight with an impressive 24 points from 21 outings. If Town can maintain or improve on that position come the season’s end, it will represent the club’s best league performance since finishing third in 1953-54.
“This is irrelevant for us,” said Wagner when asked about possibly achieving Huddersfield’s highest standing in a couple of generations.
“My English is not good enough to say just how irrelevant this is. It is all about surviving – this was the chapter we started with the first game in the Premier League.
“How many points (will Town claim this season)? No idea. Which place? No idea. That is not interesting to me.
“High up the table will be good but if not and yet we stay up, that is good, too.
“That is what we are all about. I do believe we are on track. This is a good starting point to achieve our target to survive in the Premier League. But no more, no less. We know we have to improve.”
Town were below par in Saturday’s goalless draw against Burnley. Several players looked jaded, particularly in attack, and Wagner has spent the weekend contemplating changes for the clash with Leicester.
Record signing Steve Mounie could be recalled, while Tommy Smith and Chris Lowe – if the latter’s foot problem has healed – are pushing for a return to the starting XI along with Danny Williams. “We have a very small squad and a tight squad,” said Wagner, who put his players through a recovery session at Town’s Canalside training complex within an hour of the final whistle on Saturday.
“That is because we do not have the biggest budget.
My English is not good enough to say just how irrelevant this is. It is all about surviving – this was the chapter we started with the first game in the Premier League.David Wagner
“We have to keep them fresh and healthy. We rotate them. This is what we will continue to do.”
As for the transfer window that is now open, Wagner added: “We have our eye on the market. If we can and it makes sense, we try to do something.
“But if we can’t then I am happy with the squad. They have taken us this far.”
Match report: Page 3