The psychology of the Championship is funny.
Basic level understanding of footballing mentality suggests that experience in a division doesn’t actually count for anything, and that when a team from a higher level drops down, it should play into their hands as they’re best-equipped to play their way out of it.
This is probably the best early-season litmus test that you could find. It’s not like Derby County haven’t had their own mental issues with Championship football over the last decade,
but Huddersfield’s experience in the Premier League was one of strong contrasts. They did enough to avoid the drop two years ago and that probably didn’t help them. Finishing on 37 points was probably a bit of a false position.
They then failed to add resources and well – you know.
Let’s have a look at these three best bets
The logic for this is that it just feels generous.
Odds-against about a team who are dropping a division quite seamlessly. They’re at home. They’re playing a side who lost their manager at season’s end in a deal that took too long to get done. They’ve added some valuable pieces, while Derby have seen massive turnover.
Should be straightforward, shouldn’t it?
Huddersfield, who are basically now a managerial feeder club for Borussia Dortmund II, have a footballing philosophy in place. It’ll be very similar to what it was under David Wagner.
Again – seamless.
Derby? They’ve lost a larger than life personality in Lampard – the one man who managed to break the Derby County hoodoo, and even won a playoff game.
He’s sodded off and so has Harry Wilson. Ouch. Not for me.
God help the Championship.
Mounie scored goals for Huddersfield in the Premier League. Actual goals.
And not only that, but he did it in a side who had less than no creative flow about them. Set up in a shape, boot it down the channel and hope for second balls.
Now, this lad may actually have legs – and he’s got more than enough talent to play in the Premier League, let alone roaming between gaping defensive gaps in England’s second tier.
The price might be skinny, but it’s better than him to score anytime.
There’s also a severe lack of midfield build-up in this team, so don’t be expecting opportunities for midfielders to take aim. Always a good insurance policy.
Derby ain’t scoring and Huddersfield never score three in a game. I’m telling you.
Those early season nerves usually don’t help, either. And with a frustrated fanbase at home, if Huddersfield don’t come out all guns blazing, then those in attendance will get on their backs.
This also applies for Derby, though. To go from such a high to this, minus a unifying figure in Frank Lampard, is tough.
They’ll try and keep this as tight as possible for the first hour, leading to a tricky encounter that realistically won’t be worth watching.
But hey, anything to avoid life’s actual responsibilities, am I right?