Huddersfield Town 0 Newcastle United 1: Terriers undone by game's one piece of genuine class

QUITE a month for Juninho Bacuna.

Huddersfield Towns Isaac Mbenza, right, duels with Newcastle Uniteds Matt Ritchie (Pictures: Mike Egerton/PA Wire).

The Hudderfield Town midfielder became a father for the first time following the arrival of son Jemayrio Jesinho on November 21.

Then came a run-out at Emirates Stadium against Arsenal after being brought off the bench early in the second half, which Bacuna followed by making his full Premier League debut at a sodden John Smith’s Stadium against Newcastle United.

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The result was not the one he or Huddersfield wanted, Salomon Rondon’s fourth goal in six games being enough to secure all three points for Rafael Benitez’s men.

Newcastle Uniteds Ayoze Perez screens the ball from Huddersfield Town's Philip Billing.

But there was no mistaking the pride felt by the 21-year-old, whose most notable moment in England before these recent two outings had been the comical own goal against Stoke City in the Carabao Cup that saw him slice a clearance into the Terriers’ net from 40 yards.

“It is good,” said Bacuna when asked by The Yorkshire Post about life as a father. “I sleep a lot. The baby sleeps from 12.30am until 6-7am each night, which is quite a bit.

“Coming here was a big step for me. A new club, a new country, a new start. Everything was new for me.

“It was hard, but I feel good. I got my chance against Newcastle to show what I can do. I did my job okay and I hope I impressed the coaches and the team.

“The Premier league is great. Very different to Holland. Much faster and everything feels to be that few steps higher than what I was used to.

“But I felt to do my job good and I hope I have showed I can play in the Premier League. This makes me hungry for more.”

Bacuna’s full debut in place of the injured Aaron Mooy came amid conditions so testing that the commitment shown by both sides was admirable.

Mind, Jamaal Lascelles was guilty of taking that commitment a touch too far with a truly awful challenge on Laurent Depoitre that could easily have brought the Newcastle captain a red rather than yellow card.

Town fans were understandably irked, memories of Steve Mounie’s dismissal in the previous home game for a challenge that was far less reckless still fresh in the mind.

Maybe referee Anthony Taylor made an allowance for the driving rain that pounded the surface from the first to last minute. Or maybe he did not get a clear enough view, Lascelles’s lunge having taken the defender over the touchline with his back to the official.

Either way, Huddersfield had every right to feel aggrieved considering this was the third match Mounie had been forced to sit out as a result of Michael Oliver’s reading of a tackle on Brighton’s Yves Bissouma that was more clumsy than anything else.

Whether this sense of injustice should have extended to the result on Saturday is debatable.

Sure, Town dominated possession in a first half that saw Newcastle manage just a handful of touches in the home side’s half.

And Philip Billing was denied by a wonderful fingertip save from Martin Dubravka during an opening 45 minutes that also saw David Wagner’s men create several promising situations only for the final pass or cross to be poor.

But the Premier League is regarded as an elite competition for a reason, so maybe the visitors deserved the points for providing the one genuine move of quality in the entire afternoon.

It came 11 minutes into the second half. Initially Newcastle were content to build slowly from the back. But once the ball had found Ayoze Perez on the right flank the move was given an injection of speed to compare with those car adverts from the past that promised boy racers the ability to go from nought to 60mph in five seconds.

Perez quickly found Javier Manquillo, who glanced up to see Rondon all on his own in the middle as a sea of blue and white shirts struggled in vain to get back.

One swish of the Spaniard’s right boot and the ball was on its way to Rondon, who showed his hosts how it was done by finishing in clinical fashion past goalkeeper Jonas Lossl.

After that Huddersfield huffed and puffed but rarely looked like getting back on level terms.

Isaac Mbenza and Ramadan Sobhi, who along with the lesser-spotted Adama Diakhaby were brought in last summer to pep up an attack that found the net just 28 times last season, came off the bench, but did little of note.

Nor was Alex Pritchard, Town’s most consistent threat with the ball this season, able to conjure up anything, while Depoitre was so off the pace that Mounie’s return to the starting XI against Southampton this weekend is surely a certainty.

With the atmosphere having become as flat off the field as the Terriers had become on it, Taylor blowing the final whistle merely put the home fans in the 24,036 crowd out of their misery.

Whether those same supporters had as good a night’s sleep as Bacuna is debatable for if Huddersfield cannot soon improve on their paltry 10 goals from 17 games then this season is surely only heading one way.

Bacuna, however, still believes things can turn.

“It has been the same for the last few weeks,” said the £2m summer signing from FC Groningen.

“We dominate, but the last ball and the last shot on target are not good enough.

“You can see how frustrated everyone is on the faces of the guys. I hope we can change that and get the points.”