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Possible Next Huddersfield Town Manager

Dumitru Palanchuk
Dumitru Palanchuk
19 September 2023, 14:01

Huddersfield Town have officially announced that manager Neil Warnock will leave the club after the home match against Stoke City on September 20. In the explanation offered by the executive director, Huddersfield are said to have always viewed Warnock as a short-term solution. Now that the takeover by new owner Kevin Nagle has been completed, the club is ready to make an appointment for the long term.

Warnock was admittedly surprised by Huddersfield’s decision as he – while knowing his departure was imminent – expected to be in charge at least until Christmas. The 74-year-old returned to John Smith’s Stadium in 2022/23 mid-season when the Terriers were in the Championship relegation zone and helped them secure safety with a 18th-place finish. 

List of Potential Next Huddersfield Town Manager

Warnock has revealed that new owner Nagle has a three-year plan to bring Huddersfield Town back to the Premier League. The new appointment is expected to fall in line with that plan, although there are little to no rumours regarding what candidates to become the next Huddersfield Town manager the club has in mind.

Darren Moore

Darren Moore has been touted as the favourite to replace Neil Warnock at Huddersfield Town in multiple outlets across Britain, although with little backing behind those claims. Nevertheless, the 49-year-old would make a great appointment for the Terriers thanks to his experience with West Bromwich Albion, Doncaster Rovers and Sheffield Wednesday. 

Moore started his coaching career at West Brom in 2018 when he was appointed caretaker manager of the Baggies, still in the Premier League at that time. Despite winning one Manager of the Month award, Moore could not save the club from relegation, but his work was considered enough to grant him the permanent head coach position. In the following years, Moore would work with Doncaster Rovers and Sheffied Wednesday in League One, his top achievement being the promotion he won with the Owls at the end of the 2022/23 term. However, he left the club in the summer after failing to agree on a contract extension.

Frank Lampard

Frank Lampard’s coaching career in the Premier league may have been underwhelming, but the 45-year-old English gaffer definitely knows his way around in the Championship. For one, it was his successful work with Derby County in 2018/19 – when the Rams reached the promotion play-off final – that led to his appointment at Chelsea.

The following season showed that Lampard wasn’t ready for the jump to the Premier League just yet, so maybe it is best he takes a step back and tries to restart his career in the Championship where the competition is lower. After his caretaker spell at Stamford Bridge, he is available for instant hire.

There may be a financial issue related to Lampard’s appointment, of course, but it is no doubt that he would also attract a lot of media attention to the club, which can be vital for Nagle’s new project. Unlike at his previous jobs, it looks like Frank will be given enough time at John Smith’s Stadium.

Leam Richardson

Leam Richardson has been suggested as a perfect candidate for the next Huddersfield Town manager position. The main argument in his favour would be Richardson’s successful spell with Wigan Athletic, as he won promotion to the Championship in 2021/22 and was named Manager of the Season in League One.

Prior to his head coach spell at Wigan, Richardson had worked as an assistant to Paul Cook (and John Sheridan for a while) at Wigan, Portsmouth, and Chesterfield. He also coached Accrington Stanley in League Two during the 2012/13 season, first as an player-coach on an interim and then permanent basis.

The 43-year-old is praised for delivering results with Wigan despite significant investment in the squad, showing that he has the tactical aptitude to build a proper project. He has been out of work since Wigan sacked him in 2022.

Quique Setien

There have been reports that Huddersfield’s priority target is an ‘overseas manager’. The club’s decision to act now may indicate that Quique Setien – who only left Villarreal – was high on their priority list.

While Villarreal did fire Setien, it was a locker room issue rather than a results issue as the Yellow Submarine finished 5th in La Liga last term and had a decent start to the new campaign considering the summer departures. After his somewhat undeserved sackings at Villarreal and Barcelona, perhaps Setien is ready to coach a club outside of Spain for the first time ever. 

The 64-year-old, known for his attack-minded football and ability to improve youngsters, had great spells at Las Palmas and Real Betis. His teams played great football despite lacking resources, and he would definitely make Huddersfield a team worth following.

Ralph Hasenhuttl

Ralph Hasenhuttle is another ‘overseas’ coach that is available at the moment, with the last entry on his CV being Southampton. The Saints invited the Austrian in 2018, and under his command, Southampton avoided relegation in the first season and finished mid-table in the following two. In November 2022, Hasenhuttl was relieved of his duties as the team was in the Premier League relegation zone. 

The Austrian’s best season was with RB Leipzig in 2016/17 when he took the newly promoted team to a second-place finish in Bundesliga. We should also mention that he gave Ingolstadt their first ever Bundesliga promotion in 2014/15 and managed to survive the first season in the top division.

Hasenhuttl’s coaching style has earned him comparisons to Jurgen Klopp as he also bets on pressing and intensity. However, his risky approach also resulted in two 9-0 losses with Southampton while in the Premier League. The 56-year-old may be attracted by Huddersfield offer if he is given enough freedom and trust.