Cranie challenges Barnsley to end season on a high note

Barnsley captain Martin Cranie.  Photo: Martyn Harrison
Barnsley captain Martin Cranie. Photo: Martyn Harrison
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Barnsley skipper Martin Cranie has challenged the Reds to finish the season on a high in what could be his last game for the club.

The Reds host Rochdale on Sunday in their final League One fixture of the campaign.

And Cranie, whose contract expires this season, knows victory could secure the South Yorkshire outfit a welcome top-half finish.

“It would be nice to finish the season on a high,” said Cranie, speaking exclusively to The Star.

“We’d like to go out with a win and finish in the top half, that would be a good achievement for us considering where we were in the table a couple of months ago.

“We flirted with the play-offs after a good run, but we’ve also not won in our last nine games, so a win would be great.”

Sunday’s fixture marks the return of former Reds’ boss Keith Hill to Oakwell.

And Cranie is looking forward to catching up with Hill, the manager who signed him three seasons ago from Coventry City.

“It will be nice to see Keith again,” reveled Cranie.

“He was the manager who signed me and I was sad when he left. But I’m glad he’s doing really well at Rochdale. It seems like him and the club are a perfect fit.”

But what about his own future at Oakwell, with the club understood to be unlikely to offer the experienced centre-back a new deal.

“I’ve been at Barnsley three seasons now and I do feel settled here, so I don’t know what’s going to happen,” admitted Cranie.

“But I’ll probably end up sitting down with the manager at the end of the season and discuss my future.

“Whatever happens I’ve loved my time here.

“Flicker [former manager David Flitcroft] gave me the captaincy at the start of last season and I’ve loved it. It’s been a great honour.”

The Star understands fellow centre-back Lewin Nyatanga is the only other out-of-contract player to have been offered a new deal.

n The Reds’first pre-season friendly is away to Frickley on Wednesday, July 29 (7pm).