Huddersfield’s Elias Kachunga claims that his sides’ play-off semi-final second leg tie against Sheffield Wednesday will be his biggest game yet.
Kachunga and his Terriers team-mates travel to Hillsborough on Wednesday to meet a Sheffield Wednesday side they drew 0-0 with in the first leg of their Championship play-off semi final.
Whoever advances in South Yorkshire will head to Wembley where the victors there will be elevated into English football’s top division, a level Huddersfield were last at in 1972.
Kachunga, 25, has sampled top-flight football before on the continent and was part of the Paderborn squad that reached the Bundesliga for the first time in their history three years ago, though the Huddersfield forward sees the Premier League as an even grander stage.
“I think it’s the biggest game in my career,” Kachunga said of the second leg with the Owls.
“I also went with Paderborn to the first league but the Premier League is a little bit different, maybe a little bit bigger than the Bundesliga.
“For me it was always a dream to one time play in the Premier League. When you have the chance to go up with Huddersfield then it makes it bigger.”
Kachunga, who turned his loan move from Ingolstadt into a permanent arrangement in March, was a key figure in the Paderborn team that won promotion in the 2013-14 campaign.
They did so despite playing in a 15,000-capacity stadium and with a meagre budget and Kachunga sees similarities between their story and the one unfolding under David Wagner at the John Smith’s Stadium.
“They had never played in the top division and Huddersfield have had a long wait,” he noted.
“It’s similar because it’s two small clubs, no-one thinks that these clubs will play in the first division. I’ve seen with a small club you can also beat the big clubs and go to the first division.
“We have good confidence in our team. In Paderborn it was the same. I see everyone work so hard for each other.
“Getting promoted is an unbelievable feeling. You know you’re going to the top league and you always think about this emotion and everything around this celebration.”
Having played against Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund before, the intense atmosphere of a high-stakes Yorkshire derby at Hillsborough holds no fear for Kachunga.
And the German-born DR Congo international has already developed a fondness for the things that tend to be appreciated on the terraces in England.
“I like the support from the classic English supporters,” he added.
“They celebrate also when you have a good defensive tackle. That’s not always normal in Germany – that the people stand up and push you only because you run for the defence.
“I like this here and I like the supporters in Huddersfield. I’m very happy.”