The dust has only just settled, following the arrival of Aaron Mooy, Town announced their second signing of the day as it was announced that Danish goalkeeper Jonas Lössl would be joining David Wagner’s side on a season-long loan from Bundesliga side FSV Mainz.
Like many of Town’s over the past eighteen months, Jonas Lössl arrives at the West Yorkshire club as a relative unknown. This piece looks to provide some insight into who Jonas Lössl is and what kind of impact that he will have at Huddersfield Town.
Who is Jonas Lössl?
Born in the Danish seaport of Kolding, Jonas Lössl quickly established a reputation for himself as an extremely talented goalkeeper. After joining his hometown club Kolding IF at an early age, Jonas Lössl was cherrypicked by one of one of Denmark’s household names, FC Midtjylland.
Having amassed 127 appearances for FC Midtjylland, Jonas Lössl made the switch to France to join Ligue 1 side EA Guingamp. In his two season stint in France, Jonas Lössl made 82 appearances which included a foray into Europe with the French side as Jonas Lössl made seven appearances in the Europa League.
A number of impressive performances began to attract the attention of clubs across Europe, however, it was Bundesliga side Mainz who won the race for the then Danish international. Jonas Lössl arrived at the club as the replacement for Loris Karius who had left for Liverpool.
Jonas Lössl’s debut season in Germany was a difficult one as faced FSV Mainz who finished just outside the relegation play-off places on goal difference. However, David Wagner saw the potential that Jonas Lössl possesses and on the 30th June, Jonas Lössl joined Huddersfield Town on loan from FSV Mainz for their debut season in the Premier League.
Following the arrival of Jonas Lössl, Huddersfield Town Head Coach David Wagner spoke highly of the Danish international:
“As everyone knows, we were very successful with our loans last season and now we have had the chance to bring another high-quality player to the Club in this way.”
“He was part of a club in Mainz that had a difficult season in 2016/17 and that is why we have this rare chance to take a player of his quality on loan. I trust and believe in his talent and potential.”
“Jonas has all the skills that you want from a modern goalkeeper; he is a good shot-stopper, he is a real presence and he is good with the ball at his feet too.”
“I also know he is also a good character; a real family man, who speaks fluent English. He will fit in perfectly with our squad.”
The Experts Opinion
To get more information about Town’s new Danish keeper, we spoke to Conor Garratt, Mainz fan and Bundesliga writer for Bayern Central:
How would you describe Lossl’s goalkeeping style?
Above all Lössl is a solid shot stopper. He’s tall and physical so always looks strong at claiming crosses and set-pieces, too. His distribution is perhaps questionable and his communication with the defence at Mainz always seemed a little ropey, and is probably why the club are letting him leave on loan after just a year. In fairness, given that he only began to learn German upon moving to the club last summer, the communication could probably be down to that.
Do you think his playing style or skills would suit English football?
Absolutely. As said, you cannot criticise Lössl’s physical game and this is arguably what is most important in terms of transitioning to English football from other leagues. Equally, his experience of playing in Germany should hopefully prepare him tactically for playing under David Wagner.
What are his strengths and weaknesses?
Lössl seems quite mentally strong and has not really allowed the blunders he has made in a handful of games to lead onto a longer term string of bad form. Mainz fans were a bit disappointed that he wasn’t Loris Karius, who left last summer, and he just got on with it for most of the season before eventually being dropped. Equally, he’s obviously very good at your general run of the mill goalkeeper stuff. The weaknesses would be, as mentioned, his distribution – which quite often put Mainz on the back foot straight away – and the communication with his defence, which again could be a language thing rather than an actual facet of his game.
How important has he been to Mainz this season?
Reasonably. Obviously, if a goalkeeper makes a mistake it is costly for the team and there have been a handful – that’s why he eventually got dropped. But he also won the team quite a few points with a few brilliant performances, especially leading up to Christmas, which impressed even his most ardent critics in the stands. It’s probably fair to say that he should have made a bigger impact, but he was also very unlucky that the entire defence were hapless throughout the whole season, making the transition from French to German football very difficult, to begin with.
Can you see the move becoming permanent?
With there being an option to buy it seems more than likely that it’s a possibility, and I guess that depends on how he performs. He definitely has the ability and mentality to perform well enough to earn the permanent move, it’s just about if it actually pans out on the pitch.
Are Mainz fans happy or sad to see him leave?
Mixed emotions. Quite a lot of fans I know are sad, given that he received quite a rough ride from a large section of fans and equally our former coach Martin Schmidt too. Dropping him was quite undeserved, to be frank. But, by that token, there are a lot of people who are pleased. Personally, I feel like they never gave him a chance because he replaced Karius who was a fan favourite, and didn’t start in the best of form. And, since the club have brought in an experienced former international in Rene Adler, even people who liked Lössl aren’t so much sad as perhaps regretful that it didn’t work out with a player who is very likeable.
Do you think he will fit into Huddersfield’s style of play?
I’d have thought so – to the casual eye, Wagner’s purchases from Germany so far all seem to have been astute and I can’t see this one being much different.
Will Jonas Lössl be a good signing for Town?
On this evidence, Jonas Lössl will certainly bring a different style to previous number one behind the sticks Danny Ward, his distribution might not be as excellent as Ward’s but he could bring an enhanced shot-stopping ability.
It is imperative that he builds the trust between him and the defence straight away, so his communication skills must be worked on.
It is too early to judge him but if Wagner can iron out his mistakes whilst building on his core strengths and improving his distribution which is so vital to our game, then I’m sure we can make a success out of his acquisition.
Jonas Lössl’s experience having played in the top flight of Denmark, France, Germany and now England could prove to be priceless in a relatively inexperienced defence.
The fact that we have loaned him may suggest we still intend to make another move for Ward in the not too distant future and gives us the option to assess his viability at the end of the season, saving the money we could have spent on a more established goalkeeper.
Whilst Jonas Lössl arrives at Huddersfield Town somewhat as an outcast, like many of David Wagner’s signings, there has been a reinvigoration of their career in West Yorkshire and I see no reason why Jonas Lössl is any different.