Huddersfield Town aim to provide festive cheer in home double-header

AS the Huddersfield Town players enjoyed their Christmas party over the weekend in the same city where survival had been toasted last May, there was plenty of food for thought.

Huddersfield Town's Mathias Jorgensen: Says pre-Christmas games will be so important.

Just a few hours earlier, the Terriers had battled manfully at Arsenal only to be undone by a piece of magic from Lucas Torreira near the end.

Not for the first time this season – or even that week, considering the similarly impressive display in losing at Bournemouth – Huddersfield had plenty of plaudits for their efforts but no points.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Worse still, Burnley’s victory over Brighton & HA meant a return to the bottom three.

This being the Premier League, however, there was no time to dwell on Town’s position once the dust started to settle on the squad’s festive celebrations in the capital.

Up next is a home game with Newcastle United, followed a week later by Southampton’s visit to the John Smith’s Stadium.

Two clubs who, like Yorkshire’s sole top-flight representative, have struggled this term and Mathias ‘Zanka’ Jorgensen recognises the importance of these pre-Christmas fixtures.

“I guess no-one was expecting us to go to the Emirates and collect points,” said the Danish international.

Huddersfield Town's Mathias Zanka Jorgensen (right) and Burnley's Sam Vokes during the Premier League game (Picture: PA)

“We have got two big home games coming up and we will have to be at our best. For the team and for us, it was important to spend some time together (over the weekend) to get that team (spirit) building.

“Of course we were disappointed at how it finished against Arsenal. When you fight hard for 83 minutes and then you concede what was a good goal so, yes, it has to be disappointing.”

Town’s defeat at the Emirates, their 10th in 16 outings, followed the pattern of several previous losses in that David Wagner’s side played well.

Defensively, the Terriers were as solid as they have been all season.

Jorgensen played his part in that along with all those sporting the club’s luminous third kit, even if the Dane did have one big scare when his underhit back pass was seized upon by Alexandre Lacazette.

The Gunners striker duly beat Jonas Lossl only for his celebrations to be cut short by an offside flag due to him having been offside moments earlier when trying to collect a flick-on from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The officials rightly judged Lacazette from having gained an advantage by being inches beyond Jorgensen.

“He was challenging me a bit for the ball and that makes him involved in whatever I end up doing,” said the Terriers defender.

“If I pass it and there is someone else there then it is a new situation. Of course, I understand the rules completely, but you are still relieved when you see the flag go up, as it should be.”

As for the challenges that a festive season also featuring trips to Manchester United and Fulham before Burnley head to Huddersfield on January 2, Jorgensen insists his team-mates are ready for the challenge.

“I think more and more smaller teams in the Premier League are showing that they can be difficult to play against even away and at the big stadiums,” he said.

“I think that we have shown we can be a pain in the a**e at times for some of the big teams... Then again, we also lost 6-1 to Manchester City.

“But as you saw against Arsenal, we fight our a**e off. We can cause some trouble and we almost did that against Arsenal.”