Huddersfield Town defender Matty Pearson has hailed manager Carlos Corberan for making him and his Terriers teammates better players this season, speaking to the Yorkshire Post.
The West Yorkshire outfit have been one of the surprise packages of the EFL this term, finishing 20th in the Championship last season and seeing previous key man Isaac Mbenza leave the club at the start of September after terminating his contract.
He may have been underwhelming during his first two seasons at the John Smith’s Stadium, but he recorded a vital 13 goal contributions as Town finished just six points above the drop zone.
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Despite his departure though, Corberan has managed to transform his side from relegation candidates to promotion chasers in just a matter of months, with former non-league man and Welsh international Sorba Thomas becoming a revelation for his domestic side this season with his set-piece ability and work as the club’s now-established first-choice right wing-back.
Another man that has impressed this season is centre-back Pearson, who has slotted in seamlessly into the Terriers’ back three since his arrival from Luton Town on the expiration of his contract in the summer.
Not only has he helped to contribute to a fairly impressive defensive record in conceding just 20 goals in 17 second-tier fixtures this season, but the 28-year-old has also managed to score three goals at the other end of the pitch, proving to be a vital addition at the John Smith’s Stadium.
According to Pearson himself, he has boss Corberan to thank for making him the player he is at this current stage as he spoke to the Yorkshire Post, saying: “He’s (Corberan) always demanding.
“Every day he’s demanding more from us which is good for us. He’s always pushing us and making us better players. He’s definitely demanding in every area you can think of, especially his changing methods.
“He helps us and gives us ideas on the pitch to perform even better than just the standard.
“He’s definitely helping me and the team. I feel my game’s coming on and he’s always showing us on videos where we can improve and what he demands and expects of us.”
Because of his impact, the centre-back deserves to take his place alongside West Bromwich Albion’s Alex Mowatt and Swansea City’s Jamie Paterson as one of the Championship’s best free signings of the summer.
Having two full seasons of second-tier football under his belt already with Luton before his move up north, he was already well-equipped to slot in well, but this doesn’t take away from the magnificent impact he’s made.
From a side seemingly on the decline, the arrival of Pearson and other summer signings has helped to rejuvenate the Terriers’ squad and considering they weren’t expected to be competing anywhere near the top six before the start of the campaign, the pressure is firmly off them and that can only help.
Perhaps the 28-year-old’s impact shouldn’t be a surprise considering he was part of a Luton side that performed above expectations and finished in an impressive 12th place last term.
But he deserves to be commended regardless – and credit must also go to Corberan for re-shaping his squad and giving them the platform to thrive – because his failure to stop their slide would have resulted in League One football sooner rather than later.