Barnsley: Heckingbottom wants cup to inspire Reds again

Paul Heckingbottom

Paul Heckingbottom

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Paul Heckingbottom is hopeful Barnsley can make progress the FA Cup.

The Reds’ head coach knows the effect a good cup run can have on a squad.

Barnsley’s progression in last season’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy revitalised their stuttering league season last term.

Heckingbottom’s charges went all the way to lift the trophy, before securing promotion back to the Championship.

“You can’t under-estimate a good cup run, the feel-good factor, creating interest, new fans and a big audience for the players,” admitted Heckingbottom.

“Cup runs and games against big teams can put you on the map as a player and as a football club. We’ve experienced it before at Barnsley.

“It’s great excitement and you want a cup run.

“We want to ride that cup wave and feel that different buzz and excitement.”

The Reds have been in top form recently, with five wins in their last seven Championships outings.

And they take on Blackpool in the third round at Bloomfield Road today.

The Seasiders have been on a slippery slope since relegation from the Premier League in 2011 and are now midtable in League Two.

Heckingbottom knows the pressure will be on his side to perform as Blackpool look for a cup upset.

He said: “This time last year, we were similar to them. They have a lot of the same players who we know from last year and I think they are a very dangerous team.

“Their results have been up and down this season but when they’ve played well, they’ve smashed teams. We’ve seen signs of that in the last few games.

“They have a scalp in front of them and they’ll be looking to cause an upset.”

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