Under-soil heating could not help Reds

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Barnsley chief executive Ben Mansford has stressed the club had no choice but to postpone last night’s home date with Oldham because of player safety concerns.

The Reds held an initial pitch inspection at 10.45am and then a further inspection at noon where, local referee Scott Ledger – in dialogue with Cheshire-based match official Scott Mathieson - deemed the playing surface “unplayable.”

Mansford said: “It’s never easy to cancel a game because we were all looking forward to it, but it was probably the right decision.

“Our under-soil heating has been running since Boxing Day, but with sub-zero temperatures expected by kick-off, the pitch was certainly be unplayable.

“Our staff and Barnsley Council have worked tirelessly over the weekend to give the game a best possible chance of going ahead, but we can’t control the weather.

“The issue was not the snowfall but the very low temperatures which means the snow had frozen and turned into ice, which will not thaw in these temperatures.

“Although Barnsley Council have gritted the roads and car park, the lack of traffic on the local roads means that the salt and grit have not been able to take effect.

“It’s also a blow to our corporate team because we were sold out for the match.”

A club statement confirmed: “The match against Oldham Athletic has been postponed due to concerns over Player safety. A new date for this fixture will be confirmed in the near future.”