Huddersfield Town 0 Burnley 1
Vincent Kompany got off to a positive start with a win in his first game as leader of a Burnley side still coming to terms with relegation from the Premier League.
A dominant display in the first half against Huddersfield Town yielded a goal for Dutch debutant Ian Maatsen and it proved enough for Kompany and his new team.
“I think I was more nervous than Ian before the game, but we need that composure. He won all his duels and he is going to give us a lot,” said Kompany.
Much has changed for both clubs since the end of last season, when Huddersfield lost to Nottingham Forest in the championship play-off final and Burnley were relegated after six years in the top tier.
Carlos Corberan left John Smith’s Stadium out of concerns about the size of his budget and was replaced by first-team coach Danny Schofield. Inspirational captain Lewis O’Brien and goalscorer Harry Toffolo were also sold to Forest for a combined sum of around £10 million.
Kompany was quick to downplay expectations during a summer that saw key players like James Tarkowski, Ben Mee and Nick Pope leave. Still, Burnley, who had five of the nine new signings in the starting line-up, dominated the first half and led in the 18th minute via Maatsen.
The loaned Chelsea left-back swept a right footed shot low into the far corner to complete a well-crafted move he had started himself.
The odds piled up in front of Huddersfield’s goal, with Connor Roberts making a fine save from Lee Nicholls after getting the nimble pass from Jack Cork.
Huddersfield, for whom debutant David Kasumu was forced out with a hamstring injury, picked up the pace after the break but was unable to pay off. Schofield said: “In the first half we didn’t quite get it right tactically. In the second, we changed things and started competing more. ”
Huddersfield City (4-2-3-1): Nichols; Turton, Edmonds-Green (Nakayama 89), Lees, Ruffels; Russell (Kasumu 72, Rhodes 89), Hogg; Thomas, Holmes (Anjorin 56), Koroma (Rudoni 56); Department.
Subscribers: Chapman (g), Jackson.
Burnley (4-3-3): Murian; Roberts, Harwood-Bellis, Taylor, Maats; Cork, Cullen, Bastien (Twine 70); Brownhill, Barnes, Costelloe (Vitinho 74).
Subscribers: Peacock-Farrell (g), Egan-Riley, McNally, Phillips, Dodgson.
Booked: Cullen, Taylor.
Referee: James Linington (Newport)