BARNSLEY boss Keith Hill has issued an “it can be done” challenge to his ambitious side as they look to upset Championship high-fliers West Ham today.
Both sides are looking to bounce back from defeats: the Reds lost 5-3 to Ipswich, and Sam Allardyce’s team have been surprised by Burnley and Reading in their last two matches.
Barnsley are also seeking their first league win at Upton Park for 92 years.
“Their away form is a lot better than their home form, but they’re a massive, high-calibre team who pose a physical threat as well,” said Hill.
“They’re recruiting players like the calibre of John Carew. It’s an enormous task, and if I was a betting man and I wasn’t the Barnsley manager, I’d be putting my money on a home win.
“But I am the Barnsley manager and we’re preparing and planning to take points from West Ham this weekend. It can be done.”
“If you look at the players that they’ve got - Carew, Carlton Cole, Frederic Piquionee and Kevin Nolan - they’ve got quality, and Nolan’s transfer fee is my playing budget for the season; in fact it’s probably more - and that’s the enormity of the task.”
Nolan is believed to have cost the Hammers around £4 million when he joined them from Newcastle in the summer.
But Hill added: “It’s a great task that we’re looking forward to. Where isn’t there a danger [in West Ham’s side]? We’re talking about a Premier League side that’s playing Championship football.”
The Reds have won five of their last seven games and are well on course for the target of 50 points that Hill believes will “definitely” keep them in the Championship.