Huddersfield Town head coach David Wagner had set the plan for his team before the game: “[take] an impossible task and make it possible."
On Thursday morning AET, they did just that with a 1-1 draw against last season’s Premier League champions Chelsea.
It was Caltex Socceroos star Aaron Mooy who delivered the assist to keep his side in the top flight — a gorgeous throughball to Laurent Depoitre in the 50th minute away at Stamford Bridge.
It came off the back of a heroic individual performance where Mooy was lauded as the Terriers’ best in a 0-0 draw on the road against this season’s Premier League champions Manchester City.
In the two games combined, Huddersfield completed just 246 passes. Manchester City and Chelsea combined? 1,354.
It sums up the achievement of Mooy’s team — minnows who miraculously gained promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs with a negative goal difference in the regular season, two draws in the semi-final and a penalty shootout win at Wembley Stadium.
But with Mooy the lynchpin in the middle of the park as Wagner switched up to a back five to gain survival, Huddersfield made the impossible task possible.
By 61 minutes, Chelsea had struck back via a Marcos Alonso fluke falcon after a penalty box scramble.
Chelsea threw everything at the Terriers — needing a win to heap pressure on Liverpool for the final UEFA Champions League spot going into the final day.
But goalkeeper Jonas Lössl was equal to the challenge when, in the 83rd minute, he pulled out a dramatic fingertip save onto the upright before Mooy hooked the ball clear of the penalty box.
The Aussie — who went from the Hyundai A-League to a vital cog in a Premier League side in two years — can now hope to achieve similar heroics for his national side at the FIFA World Cup.
Elsewhere in the EPL, Mat Ryan - whose Brighton and Hove Albion secured safety by beating Manchester United on the weekend, went down 3-1 at champions Manchester City.
Ryan, who has been one of the Seagulls best all season, played another full game for Chris Hughton's men but could do nothing to stop goals from Danilo, Bernardo Silva and Fernandinho at the Etihad Stadium.
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