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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 April 2007, 13:12 GMT 14:12 UK
Ritchie's Championship goal
By Pete Oliver

Andy Ritchie
Ritchie started his managerial career at Oldham
New Huddersfield Town boss Andy Ritchie does not plan to see the Terriers languishing near the foot of League One for long.

Ritchie has been handed the task of reviving the West Yorkshire club following the recent departure of Peter Jackson.

Former Hull City and Colchester boss Phil Parkinson had been lined up for the job before a late change of heart prompted him to stay on as assistant-manager at Charlton.

But Ritchie has no qualms about how his return to management came about and is focussed purely on sparking a revival at the Galpharm Stadium.

"That doesn't bother me, what's gone on," he told BBC Sport.

"We have not had the best results for the last few weeks but Huddersfield as a club is so well set up."

And according to Ritchie that means a place back in the Championship should be the immediate target.

"That's both or our goals. The board want that and so do I," he said.

"We are united on that front and hopefully that's the way we will go.

"We need to go forward. The squad need some new faces in the summer and hopefully that will be enough to start that process.

"We are going to work very hard towards it."


Ritchie added: "The biggest priority is to get into that division and then take stock and consolidate there.

"I think that's the way it's got to be because the amount of finance needed to make the next step is a hell of a lot.

"It might take a long time for that kind of finance to be available so I think that's the way to go."

Financial difficulties are nothing new for Huddersfield, who over-stretched themselves in trying to reach the Premiership in 2000 and ended up in administration.

Since then they have taken on new ownership and re-grouped on and off the field after falling as far as the bottom division.

Jackson's second coming as manager led to promotion and a play-off place 12 months ago but this season they have come up short.

Relegation does not look a serious threat but Ritchie, 46, is starting from a low base as he looks to repeat the success he previously had at Barnsley.

Last season the former Manchester United, Leeds and Oldham striker led Barnsley to promotion - ironically beating Huddersfield in the play-off semi-finals - to the Championship.

I definitely need some pace in the side and that's what I will be looking to do

Andy Ritchie
By November he had been controversially axed, but Ritchie has consigned that experience to the memory banks as he savours the challenge of re-launching a managerial career that started at Oldham.

"I take everything and use it to my advantage. If you fester over things it can leave you languishing. I just get on with it," he said.

Ritchie, whose first game in charge of Town brought the defeat at Scunthorpe which sent the Iron up last weekend, inherits a team that has won just one of its last nine games.

Bringing in new faces over the summer will therefore be crucial, although the new boss will be fine-tuning rather than overhauling a squad that has benefited from Town's impressive youth system and does have proven goalscorers in Luke Beckett, Gary Taylor-Fletcher and the veteran Andy Booth.

"We haven't got that much room to work with, to be honest, because the majority of players are signed up," Ritchie added.

"There are only about eight whose contracts are up in the summer so I have to be careful with what we do.

"The board will take a little look at it and might be able to open it up a little bit more.

"But I definitely need some pace in the side and that's what I will be looking to do.

"We have got some good young players here but we just need to get some extra legs and a bit of pace to utilise what we have got."

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21 Nov 06 |  Barnsley
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20 Nov 06 |  Barnsley


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