Wigan Athletic v Huddersfield Town: Terriers defender aims to make up for lost time

Jon Stankovic knows better than anyone the frustration of being an observer on the sidelines.

Town's Jon Gorenc Stankovic: Getting a run in the side.

The Huddersfield Town centre-back missed the Terriers’ entire 2017-18 campaign – their first in the Premier League – with an anterior cruciate ligament injury.

Two years on, the Slovenian has been given his first extended run in the side, and is set to make his sixth consecutive start for Huddersfield when they face Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium.

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The 23-year-old has been called up by manager Danny Cowley following a season-ending injury to fellow centre-back Tommy Elphick and said: “For every player when you are not playing it is hard.

“But you have to support the team, you have to be on their side. I was there for the team and if the manager needed me I was there.

“It is unfortunate for Tommy to get the injury. I was there myself and I know he will come back stronger.

“For me, I am happy I got the chance and I’m enjoying playing football.”

Of his own injury, he added: “It was difficult but I worked really hard to get through it.

“But now that I am back I am just enjoying my football again. You appreciate playing much more.”

Huddersfield visit Wigan aiming to make it six points from their last two away games, after winning 1-0 at Charlton Athletic on Tuesday evening. The Latics occupy one of the three places in the relegation zone and Stankovic insists the Terriers are targeting maximum points.

“It is a big opportunity, every game is a big opportunity for us,” he continued.

“With a good performance, we can get a result and that is what we will go over there for.

“We want to win the game, if not win the game, keep a clean sheet.”

He added: “Every game is a hard game, especially on the road.

“This will be our third game in a week so it is going to be hard.

“It is probably not going to be perfect but we will do our best to win it. The Championship is a really tough league. The top team can face the bottom team and there is no favourite.

“Anyone can beat anyone and that is how the Championship is.”

Huddersfield have lost just two of their last seven away games since the beginning of October.

Stankovic feels that form is down to the work done by manager Cowley and his assistant and brother Nicky.

Cowley is the third manager that the centre-back has worked under since his move to Huddersfield in 2016.

“It is hard to compare managers because everyone has a different style,” said Stankovic.

“With Nicky and Danny, I really enjoy working with them. When you look on the pitch I think you see everyone else is enjoying it as well.

“Everything is coming together, the little pieces are coming together. We probably deserved to have collected more points from the games than we have.

“With the team spirit and performances, you cannot change it overnight but everything is coming together slowly.”