Why bearded wonder Adam Clayton will steer clear of the razor for now
HIS BEARD seems to hold some Samson-like powers for Adam Clayton and it’s here to stay until the end of the season at least.
The 25-year-old Clayton has been in the form of his life for Huddersfield since starting his follicle adventure in November.
In December he was voted the club’s player of the month, and his performances in a deep-lying midfield role have drawn comparisons with Italy and Juventus schemer Andrea Pirlo.
And Clayton’s ability to find the net from range – as he proved in last weekend’s victory over Birmingham – has led more than 1,000 Terriers fans to indulge in a beard appreciation society on Facebook.
The former Leeds midfielder loves the attention, and he’s vowed not to reach for the razor until a play-off place is beyond Huddersfield.
“It’s become a bit of a project,” admitted Manchesterborn Clayton. “To be honest it all started because I was quite lazy, I usually get it shaved when I get my hair cut.
“But I didn’t go to the barber for a while and when I went in November he asked if I wanted to keep the beard and I thought why not?
“The missus isn’t too sure. There are days when she likes it, others she doesn’t – it’s growing on her you could say!
“It’s certainly staying until the end of the season. I hope by that point we’ll have pushed for the play-offs, it’s certainly achievable. We’re contenders, we’re just hoping we can sneak in there.”
If Clayton continues impressing he can expect more transfer interest in the summer, following two rejected bids from Brighton in January.
The Seagulls valued the former England U20 international at around £1million, but he had no intention of leaving.
“I love it at Huddersfield,” he added.“It’s a great club and the chairman is one of the best you could wish to have.
“It’s nice for people to put bids in for you, but I like the way we play here, it uses my strengths, the 3-5-2 formation allows me to sit and play.
“I get a lot of the ball, most of the time I’m the one who has had the most touches on our team so that shows how much faith the boss has in me.
“I’ve got (Anthony) Gerrard shouting at me, though, to keep in my position, so I don’t venture forward too often!”
When he does he can be lethal as his his strike against Birmingham – Clayton’s fifth goal of the season – suggests.
“I always stay behind in training for extra finishing,” he added. “I’m playing in a slightly more defensive position at present, but I still like to get into a position to shoot.
“I’m the spare man for most games, a bit like Pirlo but I wouldn’t compare myself to him. If I can be half as good as him I’ll have done okay, although he’s got some catching up to do in the beard department!”
HAIR-RAISING: Adam Clayton celebrates after scoring the second goal against Birmingham