Danny Ward has admitted he’s ready for penalties should the game against Nottingham Forest in the Championship play-off final head in that direction on Sunday.
Ward has been instrumental for the Terriers this season, scoring 14 times for Carlos Corberan’s side has been the answer to Huddersfield’s need for a consistent forward.
After an injury-hit 2020/21 campaign, Ward has been putting things right this term, leading the line on 42 occasions this season.
Huddersfield have a good relationship with the play-offs having won their last four play-off finals, but it won’t be an easy task for Ward as they come up against favourites Nottingham Forest.
Having watched Forest triumph via a penalty shoot-out in their second leg against Sheffield United, Ward has admitted he’s ready for spot-kicks should it come to it.
He told The Examiner: “There’s always that chance that a game like this can end up with penalties, I think everyone has their own way of dealing with that, I’m looking forward to it but ideally you want to be done in the 90 minutes.
“I think we’re prepared, we’ve practiced but I’m not giving anything away!”
Ward was part of the Huddersfield team that beat the Blades on penalties in 2012, and thinks Huddersfield stand as good of a chance as any side, particularly with Lee Nicholls in goal: “He’s [Nicholls] dragged us out of the dirt so many times this year with some unbelievable saves, and just his all-round game, his organisation… he’s just the perfect goalkeeper.”
It’s no surprise to see Huddersfield preparing for penalties having watched Forest goalkeeper Brice Samba single-handedly drag Forest into the playoff final with his mind-games in their shootout with Sheffield United.
That’s something that is impossible to replicate as the Blades found out. Obviously, Samba will have done his homework, but Huddersfield’s record could certainly influence the thinking in the Forest camp.
That being said, there’s a lot of football that will need to be played before a penalty shootout could take place and Huddersfield have proven to be a difficult side to beat and keep out.
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