League One’s fascinating race for automatic promotion saw yet another dramatic twist occur on Saturday which would have delighted Barnsley’s supporters.
With fellow top-two contenders Sunderland and Portsmouth facing each other, the Tykes knew that by securing a victory over Blackpool at Oakwell, they would be able to gain on at least one of their rivals.
However, after making a slow start to proceedings, Daniel Stendel’s side fell behind as Tangerines midfielder Harry Pritchard saw his deflected effort wrong foot Adam Davies. Having overcome the shock of conceding, Barnsley levelled just before half-time as Cauley Woodrow fired in his 16th goal of the season.
Despite dominating vast sways of possession, the Tykes had to wait until the 60th minute to land the all-important killer blow as Liam Lindsay headed home from a corner to clinch a fourth consecutive victory in the third tier.
In what turned out to be a perfect weekend for the Yorkshire-based outfit, Pompey’s draw with the Black Cats at the Stadium of Light saw the gap between second and third extend to four points.
Although it cannot be understated how important these results are for the club’s hopes of securing automatic promotion, the fact that Luton Town lost again means that Barnsley should now be focusing on winning the League One title in May.
Now level on points with the Hatters, the Tykes can usurp Mick Harford’s side if they better their result next Saturday. Whereas Barnsley will be full of confidence heading into their clash at Bristol Rovers, Luton will have to overcome an Oxford United side who have been experiencing somewhat of a renaissance under Karl Robinson in recent months.
If they finish first in May, Stendel’s men will end a 64-year wait for a third tier triumph having last been victorious at this particular level in 1955.
What do you think Tykes fans? Should Stendel be targeting the League One triumph following Luton’s recent slip-ups? How impressed have you been with the German since he joined the club last summer? Let us know below.
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