The Great Miracle: Huddersfield Town Stay Up
If you had asked one hundred “experts” what the chances were of Huddersfield FC staying in the Premier League for more than a singular season, ninety-nine would have said zero. They were meant to be the easy beats of the competition, the guaranteed team to go straight back to the Championship. A one and done team, where they would forever be the underdog in every contest, the Terriers were predicted by some to go back down with the least amount of points ever scored in the league. However, they turned heads, showed the fight and spirit of a dogged team to secure their place in the top flight of English football for another year at least.
At the start of the season, yours truly projected that Huddersfield would end up 16th at the end of the season. With just one more matchday to go, Huddersfield Town AFC are 16th. They can only move one more spot either way to end the season, barring a 13-0 win at home to end the season. Quite a few of the Terriers supporters were hoping for a magically start to the season, and they got it. Huddersfield took seven of their total tally in the first three weeks of the season. As a matter of fact, they were on top of the table after the first day.
The first few months were pretty eventful for Huddersfield Town, with the aforementioned seven points in August to go with draws against Leicester City and Burnley. A loss against Tottenham would see Huddersfield Town drop out of the top 10 for the rest of the season, however when the critical moments needed something to happen, Huddersfield would produce.
The crowning moment in their season outside of surviving season one and opening day would have to be the win at home against Manchester United. Despite having close to twenty percent of possession and a tirade of attacking raids put against the defense, the perennial underdogs took down one of the most valuable brands on the face of the Earth with two quick goals from Aaron Mooy and Laurent Depoitre.
It would be a barrage of draws, with an odd win thrown into the mix during the middle of the season as Huddersfield’s start caught up with them. Crystal Palace and West Ham, both who had started with no wins for the first month plus, had caught up and teams were working out how to penetrate through the guts of a hungry Terrier defense. Some fans called for the head of the manager who had taken them to the top flight, as they dropped to nineteeth after matchday 26.
The board stayed strong, as did the team and the Terriers would end up knocking off Bournemouth and West Bromwich Albion to jump straight back out of the relegation zone with just ten weeks left. It would be a flirtatious relationship with the drop zone, with a rough April schedule coming up to potentially ruin the season that started so well.
That was until Huddersfield managed to grab a 1-0 win against Watford at home. Suddenly, the Terriers had the relationship by the jaws, with more points needed but results could help them keep their place in the league. Enter Manchester City and Chelsea, looking to ruin the season. That wouldn’t happen.
Somehow, someway, Huddersfield Town would be one of the few teams to take points of Manchester City as they managed a nil-all draw at the Etihad to keep them in a good position to stay. That position would become secured with another draw against the former champions in Chelsea, as well as other results going the way of the Terriers.
The underdogs had done it, they had proven everyone wrong. The belief was there, the passion was incredible and it all paid off when the final whistle blew at Stanford Bridge. Huddersfield are the team that everyone wanted to stay up, but no one thought they could. They did it though, and the celebrated well into the night.
The true challenge will be next season, as the Terriers try to recoup their players and bring new ones in to ensure they have a third season in the league. The Terriers will probably be favorites yet again to go down, however it would not surprise this writer one bit if they were sniffing closer to the top half of the table by the end of the 2018/19 season. The Terriers did it, now it is time for Huddersfield Town AFC to prove that it wasn’t a fluke.
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