Barnsley: Lee Johnson calls for no fear

Peter Ramage
Peter Ramage
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Reds boss Lee Johnson has called for his promotion-chasing side to show no “fear” as they look to finish the season in style.

The resurgent Reds are riding high in seventh spot in League One after an impressive nine-game unbeaten run.

And with seven games remaining Johnson wants to make sure his ambitious team try as hard as they can to achieve a sought-after top six berth.

“We’ve got to kick-on,” stressed Johnson. “We’ve come from nowhere if you like, we’ve come up on the rails to get where we are.

“But I’ve said to everybody, if we’re going to fail we might as well fail having known we’ve given it a really good go.

“That doesn’t mean that we are going to fail. It means that I don’t want fear and I don’t want mediocrity.

“It’s about having that confidence and belief. Wins give you that confidence and belief.

“The results went for us on Saturday, which means we can really kick on in the last seven games.”

The Reds have conceded just four goals in their last nine outings, one of the key reasons why they’ve been able to show their new-found resilience against leaders Bristol City, in a commendable 2-2 draw and a 1-1 draw with second-placed Preston 11 days ago.

And next up is a mouth-watering derby showdown with Sheffield United this Saturday.

The Blades are fifth in the standings, but Johnson knows a victory would really help his side’s play-off ambitions.

Midfielder Paul Digby remains sidelined through injury, while young defender Mason Holgate is facing a battle to be fit because of a hamstring strain

“He’s got a hamstring niggle,” revealed Johnson. “He’s a very good young player and weed to look after him because he’s got a very bright future.”

However, loan centre-back Peter Ramage has recovered from a thigh injury and could be in contention for the weekend.

“We’ve got seven loan players, so it’s not ideal because we’ve got a lot of players and fitting them [into the match-day squad] isn’t easy,” admitted Johnson.