Huddersfield Town's Josh Austerfield enjoying 'amazing' experience on loan at Harrogate Town
The 19-year-old Huddersfield loanee has broken into the League Two Sulphurites’ starting line-up in recent weeks and has earned rave reviews from manager Simon Weaver.
Prior to his introduction as a half-time substitute for Alex Pattison in Good Friday’s 4-1 home defeat to Swindon, the unflappable midfielder hadn’t played a single minute of football since making the briefest of cameos during Town's heartbreaking 4-3 loss at Exeter City on February 15.
But he has since gone on to start each of Harrogate's last three matches, impressing in the engine room during comprehensive victories over Carlisle United and high-flying Forest Green Rovers.
And, although he has featured on just nine occasions in all competitions since arriving in January, Austerfield insists that he has really benefited from his time at Wetherby Road.
“My loan here has been amazing for me,” he told the Harrogate Advertiser.
“It took me a while to get into the team but I’ve been patient and the gaffer has always spoke to me and reassured me that my chance would come.
“Luckily it has come and I’ve managed to grasp it, I’m in the team and we are winning games, so I can’t ask for much more. It’s been a great six months and I’m not looking forward to leaving.
“If I get a chance in the first team at Huddersfield next season then I can use everything that I’ve learned here, not just on the pitch but also on the training ground.
“I’m really thankful to the gaffer, Paul Thirlwell and all the players because it’s been amazing coming here.”
Next up for Austerfield and his Harrogate team-mates is a home clash with play-off hopefuls Sutton United this Saturday.
And, buoyed by back-to-back victories - the most recent of which saw them outplay Forest Green and knock them off the top of the table - the young Terriers prospect says Town go into their final fixture of the season believing they can bag another three points.
"We go into Sutton confident now and we want to finish positively and win three out of three," Austerfield added following the Sulphurites' 3-1 success down in Gloucestershire.
"We've always been right at it in terms of 100-per-cent-effort and now we are starting to play our football and get the results as well. We've been dominating teams, which is what we want to do.
"We were massively pleased with our performance against Forest Green, in the end I think it could have been four or five. They wanted to win the league but we came here and wanted to ruin that for them and that is exactly what we did.
"They're a top side. They're going into League One for a reason but I thought we controlled the second half and deserved what we got."