Sep 13, 2014 at 3pm UK at ​John Smith's Stadium
HuddersfieldHuddersfield Town
1-2
Middlesbrough
Stead (86')
Butterfield (9'), Vaughan (19')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Leadbitter (36', 92')
Friend (26'), Clayton (84')

Preview: Huddersfield Town vs. Middlesbrough

Preview: Huddersfield vs. Middlesbrough
© Getty Images
Sports Mole looks ahead to Saturday's Championship match between Huddersfield and Middlesbrough in what is Chris Powell's first game in charge of the hosts.

Huddersfield Town will get the Chris Powell era underway this weekend when they welcome Middlesbrough to the John Smith's Stadium.

The former Charlton Athletic boss was appointed the new manager of the Terriers last week, almost a month after they controversially sacked Mark Robins following defeat in the opening match of the season.

In the meantime, caretaker boss Mark Lillis guided the team to their first win of the new campaign, but they go into this weekend's match without a victory in three games in all competitions.

A 4-2 defeat at the hands of Watford last time out has left Town hovering just above the relegation zone after five games, and should results go against them on Saturday then they could find themselves in the bottom three at the end of the weekend.

That wouldn't unduly worry Powell considering how long is left of the season, but having experienced a relegation battle with Charlton in his previous job, the new boss will be keen to avoid that this time around.

On paper, he should have the firepower available to him to keep his side at arm's length of danger, with James Vaughan finally returning to fitness following a lengthy injury and the ever-dangerous Nahki Wells partnering him up top.

High on Powell's priority list will be improving his side's home form, with the Terriers without a win in nine matches at the John Smith's Stadium - a run that stretches back to the start of March.

Boro, meanwhile, have been as inconsistent as ever in the opening stages of the campaign, winning four and losing three of their seven outings in all competitions.

Just two of those victories have come in the Championship, however, putting Aitor Karanka's side at an early disadvantage in the race for the playoffs.

The Spaniard will be hoping that it is merely a case of his new signings bedding in at the club, and the international break will have given him valuable time to work with his players on the training ground.

Whether that yields benefits for the unpredictable Boro remains to be seen, but Karanka doesn't have any new injury concerns to worry about, with Mustapha Carayol the only long-term absentee.

Daniel Ayala is pushing for a place in the starting lineup this weekend, and he could replace Sebastian Hines in the centre of defence.

Recent form

Huddersfield: WLWDLL

Middlesbrough: WLWLWL

Possible starting lineups

Huddersfield: Smithies; Dixon, Wallace, Lynch, Robinson; Butterfield, Hogg, Coady, Scannell; Vaughan, Wells

Middlesbrough: Mejias; Damia, Ayala, Omeruo, Friend; Adomah, Leadbitter, Clayton, Reach; Tomlin; Kike

Sports Mole says: 1-1

Who will win Saturday's match between Huddersfield and Middlesbrough at the John Smith's Stadium?

Huddersfield
Middlesbrough
Draw
Huddersfield
51.9%
Middlesbrough
37.0%
Draw
11.1%
Manager Giuseppe Sannino of Watford after the final whistle of the Sky Bet Championship match between Ipswich Town and Watford at Portman Road on December 21, 2013
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Preview: Watford vs. Huddersfield
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