Steven Schumacher

Argyle 3 Huddersfield 1 | Schumacher's Reaction

Sync Fixtures


Three months without football at Home Park ended with Argyle meeting Huddersfield Town on Saturday – and it was like we had never been away.

Familiar sights abounded: a sold-out ground, an Argyle win, a happy Steven Schumacher. The only difference was all this was taking place in the Sky Bet Championship, and not League One.  

Argyle brought their title-winning home form into the game against the Terriers, with Morgan Whittaker marking his return to the club with a sixth-minute opener, and although Huddersfield equalised in the dying embers of the first half, a quick one-two punch from Bali Mumba and Ryan Hardie put the Greens out of sight.

“From the moment the Janner song came on and the adrenaline starts going, the noise that the crowd generated today, there's nothing better,” said a happy Schumacher after the game.

“It's brilliant to get off to a great start. We've got three huge points in what was a really tough game, played in horrific conditions. Credit to the players for going out there and getting that win for our fans.”

Whittaker’s goal, early on, was more of a poacher’s effort than some of the sumptuous strikes from range in his portfolio, but it was of great importance, getting Argyle on the road against an experienced Huddersfield team that for large parts of the game gave the Pilgrims plenty to think about.

“It wasn't one of our conventional goals,” said Schumacher, of Morgan’s goal. “I would say it was a little bit of a scrap, a mistake possibly from Huddersfield, Morgan's in the right place at the right time and capitalises on it.

“It was a brilliant start for us, got us going, but as the first half wore on Huddersfield grew into the game and were quite strong. They finished the half really well and managed to get one back.

“It would have been easy for our players’ heads to drop, but we just said at half-time: ‘well done, you've done well, you've competed with Huddersfield who are really physical, and let's go out in the second half and try and be positive again.’ Thankfully, we did that.”

Mumba’s goal was a breathtaking effort, dribbling in from the left flank, past defenders aplenty, before calmly slotting home. It was followed within three minutes by Hardie running on to Whittaker’s throughpass and providing a finish of equal coolness to Bali’s.

The goal meant that Argyle’s front three had all got on the scoresheet, pleasing their boss no end.

Of Mumba’s solo effort, Schumacher said: “It was a great goal. It was a nice little move as well. Kaine [Kesler-Hayden] picked up a brilliant position; something that we've been working on in training throughout the off-season.

“It got Bali the ball and when he's faced up 1v1 like that against players, he's difficult to stop. He went past his marker, and it just opened up for him. It was a brilliant goal, and it came at a good time because the game was on a knife edge. It probably could have gone either way.

“The third goal was a brilliant goal too. It wasn't a pattern of play that we created, it was Morgan doing his defensive duty.

“He nicked the ball off one of Huddersfield's midfield players, and produced a brilliant throughball, which we've seen him do before. Ryan Hardie dispatched it, and that gives us a bit of breathing space that we needed.

“We speak to the players all the time about being clinical with the chances that you get, because if you don't, then good quality teams in the Championship will punish you.

“We created two good moments when our crowd was up and we had momentum in the game. We were clinical.

“[Whittaker, Mumba and Hardie] are up and running in the Championship, at a new level for them and they'll only grow in confidence. They all believe in their ability and we back them 100%, that's why we worked so hard to bring Bali and Morgan here, and why we worked so hard to keep Ryan. If I've got players like that on the pitch, who I know can score goals, then as I say, I think we can, we can compete at this level.”

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