A look to Town’s final match of the season
Town go into Saturday’s crunch game against Barnsley still needing a point to guarantee safety.
However, Barnsley need a win to stay up; a draw would leave them relying on other teams to lose around them.
Barnsley’s impressive win against promotion chasing Hull City last week saw David Flitcroft’s men further their unbeaten run to three games.
Town’s recent run has seen them win three of their last four games, which has seen them move three points clear of the drop zone.
The blistering form of James Vaughan has buoyed the Terriers with four goals in as many games. He scored Town’s first hat trick of the season last week taking his tally to 13 for the season.
The Tykes also have an in-form frontman with on-loan Chris O’ Grady smashing home three goals in his last five games. Two of those strikes came against Play-Off hopefuls Leicester City and Steve Bruce’s Hull City.
The last time Town and Barnsley played each other, Mark Robins’ men came out on top with a 1-0 victory in November, courtesy of a Jermaine Beckford strike at Oakwell.
Barnsley’s last triumph at Town came in 2006. A 3-1 victory was secured with goals from Paul Hayes, Paul Reid and Daniel Nardiello.
Steve Child and Simon Long
Barnsley’s latest results
Hull City (Championship) 2-0 (W)
Nottingham Forest (Championship) 0-0 (D)
Derby County (Championship) 1-1 (D)
Charlton Athletic (Championship) 0-6 (L)
Cardiff City (Championship 1-1 (D)
Town Team News
Loanee’s Jermaine Beckford and Neil Danns are both doubtful for the game with groin and toe injuries respectively. Winger Danny Ward also looks set to miss the final game of the campaign with a groin injury.
Barnsley Team News
Long throw specialist Rory Delap is hoping to beat a calf injury in time to face Town. Apart from the on-loan Stoke player, David Flitcroft has a fully fit squad to choose from.
Barnsley Manager: David Flitcroft
In June 2011, Flitcroft was appointed assistant manager at Barnsley after following Keith Hill to Oakwell.
The pair guided Barnsley to npower Championship safety by the end of their first season in charge, but that could have been very different had Portsmouth not plummeted into administration and received a ten point deduction.
With limited resources, this season has again proven a struggle for the South Yorkshire based outfit and Keith Hill was shown the door in late 2012 following a poor run of results. After two wins in three games during caretaker charge and seeing two managers approached and turn down the job, Flitcroft took charge on a permanent basis in mid-January.
The 39 year-olds win percentage is very impressive. In his first 23 games in charge the Tykes won 11, drew six and lost games giving him a win percentage of 47.83.
Barnsley transfers (since the last time the two clubs met)
Rory Delap – Loan - Stoke
Chris O’ Grady – Loan - Sheffield Wednesday
Ryan Tunnicliffe – Loan - Manchester United
Jason Scotland –Free - Ipswich
Andrai Jones - Free - Bury
Craig Davies - £300,000 - Bolton
Lee Collins - Released
Mido - Released
John Stones - £3 million - Everton
Matt Done – Loan - Hibernian
Rob Edwards – Loan - Shrewsbury Town
Jordan Clark – Loan - Chesterfield
Toni Silva – Loan - Dagenham & Redbridge
Key Player: Jacob Mellis
The attacking midfielder started his career as a trainee at Sheffield United before a £1 million move to Premier League Chelsea in 2007.
Mellis made only one senior appearance for Chelsea against Zilina in the Champions League before moving to Southampton on loan, where his debut came in a 3-1 defeat against Town.
After a successful loan spell at St Mary’s, Mellis initially joined Barnsley on loan in 2011, before making his move permanent last year.
This season, the creative midfielder has scored six goals and aided the Tykes fight against Survival.
Mellis has also represented England at U16, U17 and U19 level. Most notably, he scored 4 goals in 12 games for the U19 side in 2010.