Huddersfield Town manager Darren Moore faces a challenging situation as he prepares for the upcoming Championship clash with Watford. Unfortunately, two key players, Jack Rudoni and Jonathan Hogg, will be unavailable for the match.
Injuries have plagued the Terriers across various positions, but central midfield appears to be a particular concern at the moment. Jack Rudoni is expected to be sidelined for several weeks, while Jonathan Hogg will serve a one-match suspension due to accumulating his fifth yellow card of the season.
This leaves Moore with limited options for selecting his lineup against Watford this weekend. He faces a dilemma with his available candidates, as they are either struggling for form, lacking experience, or playing out of position. The prospect of David Kasumu and Josh Ruffels returning from injury in time to provide alternatives is uncertain, as Moore expressed doubts about their availability.
Ben Wiles, a summer signing from Rotherham, initially showed promise when playing alongside Hogg and Rudoni in an attacking midfield role. However, since Moore’s arrival, he has been deployed in a different position, which has impacted his performance. There’s potential in returning him to his preferred attacking role.
Brahima Diarra is another player who has thrived in an attacking role. While he excels defensively and in pressing situations, he often struggles to make effective use of the ball in the final third. Despite this, he might be the closest match to Rudoni’s ability to drive forward, provided he receives proper support in advanced areas.
Rarmani Edmonds-Green, who has made limited appearances as a substitute, may deserve a chance to cover for Hogg in the defensive midfield role, especially with Hogg suspended.
Josh Austerfield could provide more composure on the ball in Hogg’s absence, though he would require adequate defensive support. He may be better suited in a deep-lying midfield pair than as a lone number 6.
Tom Iorpenda, the reigning academy player of the year, offers a well-rounded skillset but has no senior appearances to his name. While he’s likely to remain on the bench due to a shortage of options, Moore may consider giving the 18-year-old a chance.
Ben Jackson, a versatile player, has been experimented with in central midfield by various managers in the past. Moore might be inclined to try him in this role once more.
Yuta Nakayama, a Japanese international, has been tested in a defensive midfield position but has yet to convince in that role for Huddersfield Town.
Sorba Thomas was surprisingly placed in an attacking midfield role in a previous match. Moore’s decision to use players in secondary positions was explained as a means to adapt to unforeseen circumstances, but Thomas has been performing well in his preferred position on the right wing, making it unlikely he will be moved.
The absence of these influential players poses a significant challenge for Huddersfield Town, and Moore will need to carefully evaluate his available options to field the best possible lineup against Watford.