Luton Town v Huddersfield Town: How Danny Ward rediscovered goalscoring habit

Danny Ward has gone from concentrating on avoiding injury to focusing on hurting opponents. Now coach Carlos Corberan has challenged him to add consistency.

Ward had the sort of first season back at Huddersfield Town that nightmares are made of. Many centre-forwards who do not get off the mark early for a club are unable to pull it back.

Dogged by minor injuries, he made just six Championship starts in 2020-21 and one goal. Today he faces Luton Town with eight starts and three goals this term.

“It was pretty much a complete write-off last season, it was so frustrating having a couple of games and then picking up a silly niggly little injury,” admits the 29-year-old. “Staying fit and available for every game makes a massive difference to your confidence. If you’re constantly worried about making a run or doing different things with thoughts in your head you might pick up a little injury, it’s frustrating. Once you get into the rhythm of training every day and playing once or twice a week you forget about it.”

Danny Ward celebrates scoring Town's third goal against Blackburn Rovers. (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)

Corberan thinks the turning point was the last international break.

“When he came in it was impossible to talk about goals or his performance because the focus was on his fitness,” he argues.

“This season, at first he was more focused on being available than on performances, which I understand after last season. During the last international break he was able to concentrate on making an impact.

“The new challenge is to extend those good performances and not just be available but give more to the team every three days, every week.”

Danield Ayala holds back Danny Ward. (Picture: Bruce Rollinson)

Alex Vallejo, Jonathan Hogg and Levi Colwill – who has kept his place in the England Under-21 squad – are doubts today.