Town fans’ favourite ‘Dean Hoyle Era’ XI

Its now been ten years since our great owner, Dean Hoyle took charge of Huddersfield Town. There’s been some up and downs, successes and mistakes, but we’re now pitting our wits against some of the best teams in the world, on the biggest stage of all, still under his leadership. There have been some fantastic memories in the last decade, including three play-off finals, and some brilliant players. I managed to shortlist some of the best players to play during his tenure, and put it to the fans to decide their favourite XI. Heres what the results showed…

Goalkeeper: Alex Smithies1

Despite leaving for QPR almost three years ago, Smithies accumulated some 274 appearances for the club, and was a huge fans favourite. Born in Huddersfield and brought through the academy, Smithies was a fantastic servant to the club over a number of years. His most memorable moment was his part in the amazing Wembley penalty shootout against Sheffield United in the play-off final. Smithies beat Danny Ward and Jonas Lössl to the number one spot. 46% of fans voted for Smithies.

Right-back: Tommy Smith (Vice-Captain)2

When Tommy Smith was signed as a reserve player after being released from Manchester City, there will have been few that expected him to be such a key figure in years to come. He is amongst the longest serving current members of the squad, and had a pivotal role in the promotion season of 2016/17. As the current club captain, he is the vice skipper of this eleven. Smith beats current first choice Florent Hadergjonaj, Jack Hunt and Lee Peltier to this spot. 41% of fans voted for Smith.

Centre-back: Peter Clarke (Captain)3

Everything you would want from your captain. This man would’ve ran through a brick wall for Huddersfield Town, and after two years of play-off heartbreak, Clarke finally lifted a trophy for his club in 2012. He played 225 games for Town, after being signed by Lee Clark. Despite not being the best defender on the shortlist, Clarke beats the likes of Sean Morrison and Zanka to this spot. 39% of fans voted for Clarke.

Centre-back: Christopher Schindler4

Need I say more? Perhaps the best centre half most Town fans have seen play for the club. When Wagner signed him 18 months ago, he made an instant impact, and oozed class. His performances contributed hugely to the promotion campaign, and scored the winning penalty at Wembley to make himself an instant legend. For that moment alone, Christopher Schindler will never be forgotten at Huddersfield Town. His performances in the Premier League have stepped up even further, and is on course to pick up Town’s player of the year. 99% of fans voted for Schindler.

Left-back: Terence Kongolo5

Despite only arriving in Huddersfield from Monaco in January, this man has made a huge difference. He looks like he’s been playing for the club for years, and has made the left-back position his own – a position which Town have struggled this term. His genuine quality, young age and potential means that we’ll be lucky to see him in a blue and white shirt beyond this summer, but there’s a good chance he’ll secure our survival before departing. Kongolo pipped the excellent servant Chris Löwe to the position in this XI, with the German being a huge part of last years promotion season. 56% of fans voted for Kongolo.

Central Midfielder: Aaron Mooy7

For many of us, Mooy is the best player we’ve seen to wear the blue and white. Picking up the player of the year last season, Mooy was pivotal in our eventual promotion. After his successful loan spell, Mooy signed for £10million and has continued to perform, in the Premier League. He controls games, and feels like part of the furniture in the middle of the park. If Mooy doesn’t perform, more often than not, neither do Town. Mood is Town’s main man and if we stay up, I’m sure that will continue to be the case. 91% of fans voted for Mooy.

Central Midfielder: Jonathan Hogg6

Hogg’s had his critics over the years as a Town player, but he’s thrived under David Wagner, and has cemented himself as a regular. Playing over 150 games for the club, Hogg is associated closely with Wagner’s ‘Terrier Spirit’, and has a genuine passion and love for the club. Another man who was vital in the promotion season, and has carried his role into the Premier League. He beats Adam Clayton and Jacob Butterfield to partner Mooy. 76% of fans voted for Hogg.

Right Winger: Anthony Pilkington8

Pilkington was the first player Lee Clark signed as Town manager, and he still goes down as one of the most exciting players to watch in the blue and white stripes. He was a match-winner, and could’ve fired us to promotion a year prior to actually achieving the feat, but for a bad injury. Pilkington has gone on to thrive for both Norwich and Cardiff City. The Irishman racked up over 100 games for Town, and beats Kachunga to a place in this eleven. 77% of fans voted for Pilkington.

Attacking Midfielder: Izzy Brown10

Despite only playing for half a season (21 games), Izzy Brown came in last season and made a huge impact. He scored, created, and added depth to a promotion-battling side, and was potentially the difference in securing Town their play-off spot. He couldn’t secure a permanent move in the summer, but will go down as one of Town’s best creative players in the Dean Hoyle era. He pips current number 10 Alex Pritchard, and Chelsea teammate Palmer to this spot. 46% of fans voted for Brown.

Left Midfielder: Gary Roberts9

Another massive fans favourite who had immense passion for our club, and gave everything. Playing just shy of 200 games for Town, the midfielder was a mainstay in our League One years. He contributed almost weekly with goals and assists, and was a huge player for Lee Clark. He beats Jamie Paterson and Van La Parra to this spot. 53% of fans voted for Roberts.

Striker: Jordan Rhodes11

Who else? It seems like a lifetime ago, but Jordan Rhodes showed the like of goalscoring form we’d barely ever seen for Town. He almost single-handedly carried us to promotion in 2012 with his 40 goal season, and his game to goal ratio will take some topping. Unfortunately his career hasn’t quite gone the way we all expected it to, but his time at Town will never be forgotten. 55% of fans voted for Rhodes.

Subs: Danny Ward, Chris Löwe, Sean Morrison, Adam Clayton, Elias Kachunga, Alex Pritchard, Steve Mounié

Manager: David Wagner

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