McNulty seeks festive tonic for Reds

Barnsley FC
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DEFENDER Jimmy McNulty has called for Barnsley to “steady the ship” after two defeats in a row.

Losses to Ipswich Town and then West Ham on Saturday have followed the Reds’ impressive four-game winning run.

But McNulty knows six points over the festive period will quickly banish the memories of those defeats and put the club back on track for a potential top-half finish this season in the Championship.

“We could do with steadying the ship a little,” said McNulty. “We’re win or lose at the moment. I’m sure the gaffer [Keith Hill] would be happy with a few more draws because he likes clean sheets.

“We didn’t get a clean sheet against West Ham - we were undone by one set-piece - so now I think we need to steady the ship in terms of goals conceded and get some wins or draws rather than losses.

“We’ve got Leeds and Blackpool coming up [over Christmas] and they’re going to be very tough.

“But we do hope to take points from every game. We will look to take six points from the next two games. Hopefully we can use the fans at Oakwell.”

The Reds, who are only five points off the play-off places having picked up 30 points from 22 matches, host Blackpool at home on Boxing Day, followed by a Yorkshire derby showdown with rivals Leeds United on New Year’s Eve.

And former Stockport County and Brighton player McNulty has stressed he and his teammates won’t be relaxing too much over the festive break with work still to be done.

“I’ll eat dinner like everybody else on Christmas Day, but I won’t have a drink like everybody else,” added the 26-year-old. “Maybe I’ll treat myself to a couple of sweets.

“I’ll just be settling down and not doing too much really because I’ll have to be ready for Boxing Day. It’s moaned about by some footballers, but at the end of the day how lucky are we to be footballers?”