Wagner - Be Proud After Wednesday Win
Head coach David Wagner has said everybody associated with Huddersfield Town can be proud of our achievements following victory over Sheffield Wednesday in midweek.
Having played out a scoreless draw at the John Smith's Stadium in the Play Off Semi Final first leg, we headed to Hillsborough for the decider on Wednesday evening and with scores tied at one a piece following a goal by Fletcher for the hosts, and a Lees own goal getting us back on level terms, off to extra time and penalties the match went.
Extra time couldn't separate us so penalties decided it and Huddersfield booked their place at Wembley in the Championship Play Off Final with a four three win from the spotkicks.
Speaking to the Official Site in his post game press conference, Wagner knew it was one of his best achievements as a head coach so far and he felt everyone linked with the club could be proud of what we've achieved so far this year.
'We all have to thank the players, the backroom staff, the supporters and the Chairman; they have all done an unbelievable job this season and they deserve to be so happy and proud. I can say after being promoted with the Dortmund Second Team, this is the biggest achievement I have had as a Head Coach so far and I`m very happy to be a part of this group.'
Even though the victory went down to penalties, Wagner went on to say he always remained confident the players would do the job and a little conversation with goalkeeper Danny Ward only boosted his belief.
'I was pretty relaxed, Wardy came up to me before the shoot-out and said, 'Boss I will make it happen` so I was relaxed. I trust Danny and my players.'
With some crediting it as a Lees own goal that got us back on level terms, in any event it was Collin Quaner brought on as a substitute for Elias Kachunga who set up Nahki Wells for the leveller with some attributing it to him, and Wagner was pleased with the impact he had.
'Collin was an unbelievably positive influence when he came on, he has been in very good form over the last six or eight weeks and it was very hard to not start him. He did exactly what I expect my players and subs to do if they come on, even if it`s just for half an hour; they have to make sure they make an impact. Collin did that. He played very well and I`m very happy for him. I`m so proud of my players and of this Football Club; everyone connected with this group should be proud of what they`ve done this season.'
Wagner also had praise for our opposition across the two legs.
'A semi-final that is played over two legs and still goes to a penalty shoot-out shows how tight the games were and how even they were. Sheffield Wednesday was a very strong competitor so my thoughts are with the Club and with Carlos Carvalhal. Sheffield played a very strong season and was a very opponent in the semi-final; in the end I think we deserved to be in the final because not only in these two matches but the whole season the players have worked their socks off, they tried everything. This game today showed the players character; they have a working and fighting attitude which is extraordinary, they are able to bounce back and you should never write them off. They showed that again today and I am very proud.'
Witha break until the final now, Wagner also said the group would go off to Portugal for extra training.
'We`ve planned something and I have to give a bit credit to Mark Fagan, our Player Liaison Officer, for doing this; He has worked his socks off to get everything sorted. We will start tomorrow, with the players and their families and go to Portugal for five days to recover and train there. That`s where our focus will start for Wembley. The gap is so big I believe it makes sense to leave Huddersfield for a few days, not to relax, we will work but in a different environment; then we will come back a good week before the final. The target is clear we would like to write the last successful chapter of this fairy-tale, that we started 10 months ago, everybody knows we are one step away from the Premier League. Wembley should be the biggest occasion and atmosphere ever and hopefully thousands of Huddersfield Town supporters will be there.'
So to the final, and Reading on Monday May 29 at Wembley Stadium.
'A lot of the pundits expected us to be in relegation trouble but now we are in the final at Wembley. We always said we are a small dog, everyone knows we are a low budget club but that doesn`t stop us being ambitious. You can only manage your ambitions if you focus on yourself and try to work; this is what the players have done over the whole season and now they`re at Wembley.'