Talking Tactics | Huddersfield Town v Swansea City

12th November 2022
First team
West Brom away Steven Benda

After a superb run of form, Swansea will want to end a run of four games without a win and head into the World Cup break in high spirits when they face Huddersfield this afternoon.

While the Swansea have only lost once in that recent run, they have dropped out of the play-off places and are aiming to get back to winning ways at Huddersfield.

Ahead of this one, preview the encounter at the John Smith's Stadium, taking a look at what to expect from the Terriers, the key battle and a key stat.

What to expect from Huddersfield

Mark Fotheringham

Huddersfield were rocked by Carlos Corberan's exit back in July. The Terriers had lost the Championship play-off final in May, and his exit didn't help the team.

With the way things have panned out since, it's easy to forget that just six months ago Huddersfield were turning out at Wembley and were 90 minutes away from a spot back in the Premier League.

Fast forward to the present day and the Yorkshire side sit bottom of the Championship, four points off safety, having collected just 18 points from their 19 games.

That said, two of their five wins this season have come in their last four matches, including an impressive 2-1 win at promotion-chasing QPR.

Mark Fotheringham took over after Danny Schofield's short spell in charge back in September, with the aim of keeping Huddersfield in the division.

While the Scot did favour a three-man backline in the opening weeks of his tenure, he has since reverted to a four-man defence, and evidently to good effect.

The change of shape had been been due to injuries to key men, with Fotheringham having to deal with a lengthy absentee list, yet it's proven something of a blessing for the Terriers boss.

He will know a win ahead of the World Cup break will certainly boost confidence for the second half of the season.

Huddersfield's best route to goal has proven to be to maximise the creative talents of Sorba Thomas. The Welshman has registered six assists this season, while only Ilias Chair (3) is making more key passes per game than Thomas (2.4) in the Championship this season, underlining a statistically calculated strength of 'key passes'.

Therefore, shutting down Thomas could prove crucial for the Swans against a Huddersfield side who have not found goals easy to come by.

Indeed, only Preston (16) and Cardiff (17) have scored fewer goals than the Terriers (19).

Key battle

Steven Benda

No Huddersfield player has scored more goals than Danny Ward (3) in the Championship this season, although he has netted just one goal in his last 16 outings.

Nevertheless, Ward is expected to lead the charge for the Terriers on home turf this weekend and he'll aim to score a first career goal against Swansea having failed to net in three past appearances.

Russell Martin made the call to change goalkeeper earlier in the season, with Steven Benda starting 13 of 20 league games in 2022-23.

Benda is expected to keep his spot between the sticks in Yorkshire this weekend and, against a Huddersfield side that have scored 10 goals in 10 home games this season, the German will be looking to help his side to keep out the likes of Ward and Thomas and head into the break with a morale-boosting win.

Key stat

Watford away Olivier Ntcham goal

At the time of writing, Swansea have scored the fifth most goals in the division, with 27.

The Swans will have the belief they can add to this record at Huddersfield. Only Rotherham (15.8) and Blackpool (14.9) are conceding more shots per game than Huddersfield (14.1) this season and the likes of in-form Olivier Ntcham will not need a second invitation if such opportunities arrive on Saturday.