Barnsley will be bracing themselves for bids from Huddersfield town for their Ghana International left-back Andy Yiadom come January. A deal that was agreed by both clubs failed to materialize and go through when Yiadom failed his medical. David Wagner is keen to add his ranks and increase the competition in the right-back position that is currently held by Huddersfield skipper Tommy Smith.
The addition of Yiadom could provide comfort to Wagner in the sense of squad depth. Wagner brought in fellow right-back Florent Hadergjonaj from Ingolstadt to supply cover to skipper Tommy Smith, but another personnel in the ranks is vital given that Smith has found himself in the book 4 times already.
At the moment Huddersfield’s first choice right back is Tommy Smith who has 10 Premier League starts. Andy Yiadom holds a very good personal defensive record last campaign. The Ghana International loves to dribble and run forward with pace. He holds an average 1.8 dribbles per game, a figure much higher than Tommy Smith’s 0.3.
Defensively too, Yiadom holds a better ratio than his compatriot in terms of tackles and interceptions per game. But if there one thing that he has to improve drastically is his passing. The Barnsley left back at times struggles to release the ball accurately to his teammates.
As we speak of the two clubs involved in the deal, it could come as a benefit to both parties. It is understandable that Barnsley will be willing to offload their striker in January as the left back’s contract runs down at the end of the season. The Terriers are also in desperate need for cover and competition in the right-back position if Wagner wishes to retain Premier League status and achieve a decent first season in the top flight.
Yiadom is yet to test himself against the Premier League’s power and quality something that is of much higher order than what he is currently facing in the second tier of English Football. It is a huge gamble that Wagner is ready to take possibly to stabilize his defence and ensure that there is enough back up if at all injuries and suspensions go against him through the course of the campaign.
To stay in the top tier and put up a fight against the big boys in the league, one needs a strong back line. Wagner realized that and identified Yiadom as a viable option having pushed for the move in the summer. Given that the swoop failed at the final hurdle, Wagner would be determined to ensure that the right-back is at his disposal come January.
But is this the right move by Wagner?