After several weeks of searching, Huddersfield Town have found their new manager.
Having sacked Jan Siewert on the 16th August following a 2-1 defeat to Fulham, it was announced on Monday that Danny Cowley had left Lincoln City to take over at John Smith’s Stadium, with his brother Nicky making the same switch to become the Terriers’ assistant manager.
Cowley’s first game as Huddersfield manager sees his new side host local rivals Sheffield Wednesday – who have just appointed Garry Monk as their own new manager – at the John Smith’s Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
It is certainly an interesting decision that Huddersfield have made in appointing Cowley, and we’ve taken a more in-depth look at it here, in our latest six point opinion piece.
Firstly, what’s Cowley’s managerial history like?
“The step up to the Championship makes this the biggest job he has ever taken on.
“Having started his career further down the non-league pyramid with Concord Rangers, Cowley made the step up to the National League in 2015 with Braintree, guiding them to the play-offs in his one season in charge before making the move to Lincoln in the summer of 2016.
“Cowley’s time at Lincoln was then a big success. He won promotion to the Football League in his first season with the Imps, and after two years in League Two, saw them promoted to League One as champions last season, before taking four wins from the start of the current campaign to leave the club inside the play-off places after the first few weeks of the season.”
How about Huddersfield’s situation right now?
“Despite their higher position in the football pyramid, things have been much less positive for the Terriers in the past year or so.
“After suffering relegation from the Premier League with just three wins all season last year, Huddersfield have taken just a single point from their opening six games of the season under Siewert and caretaker manager Mark Hudson.
“That has left them 23rd in the early standings, and facing a big challenge to drag themselves back up the Championship table.”
So what does this appointment say about Huddersfield?
“It’s an interesting one.
“In some ways it suggests that the Terriers have abandoned the international approach they had taken recently, which had worked well with David Wagner, but less so with Siewert.
“However, in appointing Cowley, they are still going down the route of a young, hungry manager who is determined to succeed, with the main difference perhaps being his greater familiarity with the English game.”
Is this a good appointment then?
“I think it is.
“Cowley looks to be a hugely promising young manager, and the success he has already enjoyed certainly highlights that.
“The fact that he has coped easily with any step up in level he has previously made suggests he will be capable of adapting to the Championship, and his impressive presence, both visibly and audibly, means you imagine he will be able to give this Huddersfield side the lift it badly needs.”
How will Huddersfield fans feel about it?
“You would imagine there will be a great deal of excitement around this appointment.
“Cowley did seem to be a popular choice amongst the Terriers faithful when his name was thrown into the ring, and the fact that he has a proven track record in several divisions will surely be an encouraging sign for them.
“They haven’t had much to smile about in recent years, so making sure that they got their man may well help to lift the mood around the John Smith’s Stadium ahead of that crucial Yorkshire derby on Sunday.”
And, finally, what should Huddersfield’s aim for this season be now then?
“I think survival would do it.
“It is worth remembering that for all the optimism there is around this appointment, it is possible that this will not be a quick fix for Cowley.
“This is a Huddersfield side whose confidence will almost certainly be decimated, having won just four of their 54 league games, so it may not be easy to instil that winning mentality around the club again.
“You feel, therefore, that with Cowley needing time to adjust to his new squad and surroundings, and the slow start to the campaign they have endured, the Terriers may be better off ensuring they get the required points to remain in the division this season, before really pushing on next year.”