Barnsley: Wilson confident in Reds’ improvement

Conor Hourihane celebrates with team mates after netting against Coventry
Conor Hourihane celebrates with team mates after netting against Coventry
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Reds boss Danny Wilson is quietly confident his new-look squad will grow from strength-to-strength.

But Wilson also knows his side cannot afford to be caught napping in League One.

Successive home defeats in their opening two fixtures of the new campaign gave Wilson cause for concern, but the Reds have bounced back with four points from a possible six in their least two league outings.

And now Gillingham visit Oakwell on Saturday as Wilson tries to guide his team to their first home win of the season.

The Reds drew 2-2 away to Coventry City on Tuesday night at the Sixfields Stadium having twice come from behind to snatch a valuable point on their travels.

The signs are gradually starting to show that the Reds have found their feet, although they desperately need to improve at the back having leaked six goals in four games so far.

“The sharpness will come with games,” stressed Wilson. “It’s easy to think we’ll get better and better further down the line, but we want it now.

“We’d like it to happen overnight and we’d like to have a continuous run all season, but we’re realistic that it’s probably not going to happen that way.

“But we’re working at getting better and stronger as we go along. We’ve seen we need to work on different aspects of our game, both in the offensive and defensive areas. And the players are quite open with that.

“However, the more we play together then the more understanding they’ll be, which is what we want.”

Keeper Ross Turnbull has yet to feature this season but could make the substitute’s bench this weekend having missed the start of the season because of a back injury.

Young defender George Smith, who is unlikely to play a major first team role, remains sidelined with a broken toe suffered before the season start, but winger Dale Jennings is back in contention for selection having served a three-match suspension for the red card he picked up on the opening day of the new campaign.

And despite having already recruited ten new permanent signings – plus two loan signings – Wilson has revealed there is more scope to sign additional players to strengthen his squad.

“There are still one or two additions I’d like to bring, but that’s a real understatement,” admitted Wilson.

“Those signings might give us that bit of steel and toughness we’re looking for. You have to be able to deal with the physicality in this league

“There’s scope to sign new players. We’re not going to blow people out of the water with the prices we’re going to pay for players, but there is scope to bring in new players.”

Meanwhile, former Barnsley midfielder Paddy McCourt has joined Brighton and Hove Albion on a one-year deal.

The 30-year-old was a free agent having been released by the Reds this summer.