Lee Clark went into the Shakers second pre-season game looking to get minutes on the field into his players rather than anything tactical and he stated that the starting eleven for this pre-season run out will bear no resemblance to what he hopes to see at the same venue in just under three weeks’ time against Walsall.
The first real effort of the game came, on two minutes, when a surging run forward from former Huddersfield striker Jermaine Beckford saw him brought down some five yards short of the visitor’s area, much to the amusement of the 2,005 visiting supporters. The resulting free kick though saw Andy Tutte’s effort hit the Terriers wall before being cleared further up the field.
Huddersfield Town should have taken the lead, just moments later, when a long, defence splitting, ball carved the Shakers back four in two. With both Adam Thompson and Nathan Cameron caught flat-footed, Town’s new £11m striker Steve Mounie made an easy job look more difficult by taking a touch and attempted to find a little more room in front of Joe Murphy’s goal however, his touch allowed the Shakers defence the time to recover and a returning Nathan Cameron was on hand to smother the eventual shot from Mounie.
Craig Jones, another player returning from a long-term injury, showed a great reading of the game, on six minutes, when he cleverly intercepted a ball passed wide. With a burst of speed, he managed to get the ball into the Huddersfield half before two defenders smothered the ball, pushing it out for a throw.
Another free kick, for a similar challenge on Beckford, brought a venomous shot, this time from Jay O’Shea, but straight into the Huddersfield wall. Craig Jones was on hand to flick the resulting, rebounded, ball towards the back post where it found the head of a leaping Jermaine Beckford, but he was unable to test keeper Jonas Lossl.
The next meaningful shot came from Huddersfield’s Rajiv van La Parra as he left fly from fully 20 yards, but his effort drifted across the goal and out for a Bury goal kick. Moments later, the Terriers Phil Billing collected the ball, from a loose pass by Shakers newly named skipper Stephen Dawson, but his run and shot brought a fine save from Murphy who tipped the ball over the bar.
With 30 or so minutes on the clock, the Shakers suddenly found their passing game and some crisp, one touch, passing moves around the pitch carved out several half chances. One such chance fell to Beckford inside the box, but just as he pulled the trigger a tremendous, sliding, challenge from Martin Cranie saw the ball pushed away for a corner.
With no goals scored at the break, it was a huge surprise to many to only see three changes, to the Shakers line-up, at the start of the second half with Callum Styles, Kyle Letheren and Eoghan O’Connell replacing Andrew Tutte, Joe Murphy and Nathan Cameron respectively.
It took the Shakers just three minutes, in the second half, to take the lead in the game. A misplaced pass was collected by Jermaine Beckford and, after taking a touch, he managed to side foot the ball across the young Huddersfield ‘keeper, Schofield, to record his first goal for the club with a fine finish. It may have been in a pre-season friendly but, as he said later, it's always good to get off the mark.
Huddersfield looked for an immediate response and it almost came three minutes later. A stinging ball in from the flank, in the shadow the South Stand which housed 2005 visiting Terriers fans, was superbly collected by Shakers triallist ‘keeper Kyle Letheren, but, within sixty seconds, the visitors were level. The exact same ball, from the left hand side, was fired into the box at pace, but this time the ball was smashed home from close range by Steve Mounie to make it all square.
The game then went into full pre-season mode, on the hour, as Bury made eight changes (Dai, Edwards, Humphrey, Ismail, Aldred, Heardman, Mayor and young Ryan Cooney – all replacing Dawson, Leigh, Jones, Thompson, O’Shea, Reilly, Beckford and Sang).
Within a minute of the Bury changes, Huddersfield also changed six players and, within five minutes, took the lead. Another great ball was whipped into the box, this time from the Huddersfield right, and this time it was down to another new signing, Tom Ince, who got the deftest of touches from close range to find the back of the net.
Young Callum Styles and Tsun Dai, at one point the central midfield pairing for the Shakers Youth team, produced a moment of sheer quality between them when, on 69 minutes, they danced the ball around and through the Huddersfield midfield order, much to the delight of the home supporters in the Main Stand.
Danny Mayor, another player returning from long term injury, almost made it a perfect come back when, on 70 minutes, he dropped the shoulder on the edge of the box, and with most Bury supporters knowing what was to follow that dropped shoulder, the shot came but it lacked pace and direction and rolled harmlessly out of play.
Huddersfield broke through again, down their right, on 84 minutes and with Tom Ince bearing down on goal, young Ryan Cooney suddenly produced the touch of the afternoon to deny Ince a chance on goal and, not only did he get the slightest of touches, he also managed to sweep the ball away with his second touch. It was a lovely, assured, touch from yet another promising Shakers Youth tem product.
With minutes to go, a challenge from Chris Humphrey on the classy Tom Ince, inside the Bury area, brought the inevitable penalty, which produced a third and final goal for the Terriers as Elias Kachunga softly stroked the ball to send Letheren the wrong way and placed the ball into the opposite corner.
It was another good workout and players got more minutes into legs and with Nicky Ajose not used plus, hopefully, Joe Skarz, who missed this afternoon’s game with a badly bruised toe, back in action soon, as the Shakers pre-season campaign moves to the Moss Rose, Macclesfield on Tuesday evening.
Attendance: 3,306 (2,005 visitors)