QPR v Huddersfield Town - Plan B starting to deliver results

Fraizer Campbell’s comment about how Huddersfield Town have changed in recent weeks sums up Carlos Corberan’s time as coach.

Huddersfield striker Fraizer Campbell. Picture Bruce Rollinson

“If you’re playing a certain way and no one knows about that way you catch people by surprise but after a certain while of doing that people start to work you out so you’ve got to have a plan B, plan C, plan D,” he said.

Teams seem to have sussed out the Terriers’ possession-heavy plan A, so successful in the first half of the season and seemingly an article of faith until Corberan signed 6ft 3in targetman Yaya Sanogo and changed course to a more direct route in the last two matches. The result has been consecutive draws and a much-needed clean sheet, albeit with the nagging feeling it could have been better still as they look to pull clear of Championship relegation trouble.

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It points to more of the same at Queens Park Rangers and another game in a different role for Campbell,

The 33-year-old has been carrying a heavy load on his shoulders all season, the only fit senior centre-forward for much of it until the arrival of free agent Sanogo.

It has not always been a lone furrow. A 4-3-3 formation has generally been the way but from time to time Campbell has had some company, be it the all-too sporadically-fit Danny Ward, back in contention today, makeshift strikers like Isaac Mbenza and Josh Koroma, or youngster Kieran Phillips.

Playing alongside his former Crystal Palace team-mate Sanogo, who made his full debut against Cardiff City last week, in a 3-5-2 is a different matter, though.

“I’m not lazy but if somebody can do half the work it’s lovely!” says Campbell. “If there’s two of us they can’t stop us all the time but it’s not the end of the world if we don’t play that way because we’ve got some good No 10s.

“In a 4-3-3 I’m relying on midfielders making runs up towards me so if the ball does come to me I’ve got someone to pass to.

“Both formations have their pros and cons. When me and Yaya are up front if the ball’s long up to him I’m the one who’s got to be getting around him; if it’s me and Danny Ward it’s two similar types of strikers.

“It depends on the opposition you play and what formation but the key thing is having that variation so we’re not as predictable and we cause other teams more problems.

“I’m always happy to do any job for the team, whether that be playing with another striker, playing in a different sort of position or on my own. I’m competitive to say the least and I always want to win so no matter what the manager is asking me to do, I’ll do it to the best of my abilities.”

Corberan talked after the draw with Birmingham about making his side less predictable and Campbell, who scored an outstanding volley in that game, is on board with that.

“Having more players playing different types of ways is always going to be a strength so you can mix it up,” he says. “If one way’s not working you can change to another way and make it harder for the opposition to read what you’re doing.”

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