Barnsley 2 Shrewsbury Town 1: Reds refusing to wilt in League One promotion race as they deliver another crucial win
Barnsley are refusing to wilt in the League One promotion race as they delivered another crucial win.
With Sunderland and Portsmouth breathing so hard down their necks in the battle for the automatic promotion places they can hear them, the Reds showed they are up for the fight – and this has nothing to do with events in the Oakwell tunnel and a certain manager of another club.
They were not at their best against the Shrews, but managed to get over the line against one of the most difficult opponents they have faced this season, claiming a 2-1 success.
Goals from Alex Mowatt, a screamer from distance, and Jacob Brown won it for the Tykes, either side of Tyrese Campbell's leveller as their Oakwell dominance shows no sign of ending.
Sunderland, who beat Doncaster, and Portsmouth, winners at Burton, are not going away, and have games in hand, but they also have to play each other.
This is a fascinating three-way battle for a place in the Championship and it is going to go down to the wire.
The manner of this victory against Shrewsbury suggests Barnsley might just have what it takes to get over the line.
Mind you, it helps when you have the division's best goalkeeper at your disposal as Adam Davies was the star.
Davies, named in the divisional team of the year, made key stops from Shaun Whalley and Fejiri Okenabirhie, and was credited as the reason for winning.
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Stendel said: “We won the game because we scored twice, one more than Shrewsbury and because we have the best goalkeeper in League One.
“I think that’s the biggest reason we won today. He (Davies) was excellent today.”
Stendel has been in the headlines all week, but this is the first time he has spoken and he opted not to answer questions regarding the alleged assault on him by Joey Barton, which is still the subject of a police investigation.
The Barnsley fans let their German manager know exactly how they feel about him and, while the reception touched him, he is only focused on his side's promotion quest.
“I’m very happy about the reception from a lot of the supports in the last week and today,” he said.
“We want to keep gaining points, we want nine points from the last three games and we will see what happens. It’s good for us to win this game but we need more points."
That quest continues on Monday with a lengthy trip to Plymouth.