Reds ‘have quality to improve’

Barnsley face ex-boss Keith Hill's in-form Rochdale side on Saturday
Barnsley face ex-boss Keith Hill's in-form Rochdale side on Saturday
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Skipper Martin Cranie has admitted that Barnsley’s home form has been nothing short of “terrible”.

But Cranie is confident the Reds have enough quality to get their season back on track with a much-needed run of confidence-boosting results.

“The players all know we can do better – and we’ve had a chat about it,” Cranie told The Star.

“Everybody is disappointed, but it was constructive criticism and conversations about how we can improve.

“We’ve been conceding some really poor goals and the defence usually gets singled out.

“But we can’t just look at the defence. Collectively we need to be better – and we know that.

“We’ve got a strong group of players and enough quality to do a lot better in this league.”

The Reds have slumped to 21st in the table after just one point from their last four league outings.

And the goals continue to be leaked with ten having been conceded in those four fixtures, with just one cleansheet in the league from ninematches.

“We’ve conceded some bad goals – and we know that has to stop,” stressed Cranie.

“A lot of the goals we’ve conceded have been avoidable, but as soon as we start keeping cleansheets I’m sure we’ll get better.

“We’ve got a very young team, but we’ve played ten or more games together now so we can’t keep hiding behind that excuse.

“We’ve been together for a couple of months and I can see the quality. But it’s up to us to show that quality.”

The Reds did impress when they went on a five-game unbeaten run which started with a 2-1 away win over Crewe and ended with a 2-0 victory at home to York City in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.

But September has been a month to forget with a 5-3 hammering at the hands of MK Dons then losses to Port Vale and Swindon.

And this Saturday’s away clash with Rochdale, managed by former Reds’ boss Keith Hill, is sure to be another tough test.

Dale have won their last three matches and five of their last six games in all competitions.

“Hopefully we can get our last few results out of the system against Rochdale,” offered Cranie.

“They’ve [Rochdale] have been doing well, but we know there’s no easy games in this league.

“There’s quite a few ex-Barnsley players in their side and they’ll want to get the better of us.

“But it’s up to us to show lots of character and get the result we need.”