Barnsley Exclusive: Reds in talks to sign striker

Lee Johnson
Lee Johnson
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Barnsley are in talks with a potential new striker.

But Reds’ boss Lee Johnson knows he faces plenty of competition to sign the player.

Speaking exclusively to The Star, Johnson revealed he would “ideally” like to sign four strikers, but would settle for three ahead of next season.

Sam Winnall is the only senior striker left at Oakwell with fellow hit-men Kane Hemmings and Leroy Lita having been released.

Youngster Rhys Oates was also released at the end of last term and Stoke City loan centre-forward George Waring is understood to have been offered a new deal at his parent club.

“We’re in talks with a striker, but there’s five or six clubs in for him, so it could be difficult to get him,” revealed Johnson. “But we’re hopeful and we’ll do our best to try and get him.

“He’s available on a Bosman [out of contract] so it would make good business sense, but we’ll just have to see what happens.”

Johnson is understandably hungry to strengthen his squad in readiness for a potential promotion push next season.

And the 33-year-old admits “variety” is the name of the game when he’s looking to assemble his perfect hit squad.

“Ideally I’d like a target man, a quick one, a goalscorer and a jack of all trades,” added Johnson.

“Finding some strikers is definitely a priority and also strengthening in defence. We’ve got a lot of midfielders, but up top we need to add some players. We definitely need to find two strikers because we’re only got Sam Winnall at the minute.”

Former Scunthorpe United hitman Winnall bagged 13 goals last season in a injury-hit campaign. He finished the season as the club’s second top scorer being Conor Hourihane with 14 goals.

But Johnson knows he needs to find more strikers to help Winnall share the workload.

“I like to change my strikers after 70 minutes, it gives the opposition something to think about,” admitted Johnson. “Hopefully we can find a few to compliment to Sam.”