Reds in mood to keep up run

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BARNSLEY boss Keith Hill politely declined to comment yesterday on speculation that he is being lined up to become the new Blackburn Rovers manager.

Former Rovers player Hill has been linked to the Ewood Park job along with Tottenham Hotspur technical Tim Sherwood and former Rovers striker Alan Shearer.

But The Star understands Hill is keen to continue working with Barnsley, having guided them to 13th in the Championship - their highest position so far this season - and is fed up with speculation over his future.

Speaking exclusively to The Star, Hill said: “I’m not prepared to get involved in that political game. I’d prefer not to say anything.”

It’s back to business tonight for the Reds as they host Peterborough looking to make it five games unbeaten on their patch.

Oakwell has been a fortress so far this term with Hill’s side having won two and drawn two of their home matches so far.

The Reds have also only conceded twice at home this season, but Posh ended a miserable run of seven successive league defeats with an impressive 3-1 away win against Hull City on Saturday.

And Hill stressed: “It was always going to be difficult against Peterborough regardless of how well they played against Hull.

“We’ve got to be very careful we don’t expect too much. We had a great result against Birmingham and probably should have got three points against Ipswich, but instead we got one.

“But I was really pleased with a point and I’m very encouraged by how we’re playing.”

That’s a view shared by midfielder Stephen Dawson, whose first goal for the club secured a point against the Tractor Boys.

“Last year, we weren’t good enough as individuals and collectively, so I can understand why people tipped us for relegation this season,” said Dawson, delighted the Reds are sitting pretty in mid-table after a promising start.

“But it’s been good because we’re starting to play some nice attractive football. Safety is the main aim in this division because we’re competing against a lot bigger teams and a lot bigger budgets, but we don’t use that as an excuse.

“We believe that if we’re on it, and playing the know we can, then we can beat anyone in this league.

“We’ve got to keep believing in what we’re trying to do. We’re starting to see the rewards.”

Defenders Bobby Hassell and John Stones could force their way back into the Reds’ starting line-up, while keeper Luke Steele may replace Ben Alnwick between the posts.