Barnsley: Reds skipper can’t wait for vital derby duel

Barnsley captain Martin Cranie.
Barnsley captain Martin Cranie.
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Reds skipper Martin Cranie has stressed the club must get maximum points in today’s Yorkshire derby clash with Leeds United.

If the Reds pick up all three points at Oakwell, then Cranie is optimistic that Championship survival will have swung in their favour.

“It’s another game where we must take three points despite how much we try and play it down,” said Cranie.

“It’s going to be a full house. The result is massive. If we can get the three points, and a couple of other results go our way, then they’ll be about four teams on the same points with three games to go.

“We know the situation we’ve put ourselves in so every game is a cup final for us.

“It would be nice if we could get it done [secure our Championship status] with a game to go, but it does look as if it’s going to go the last game of the season. But we’ve got players from last year who have the experience of doing it [keeping us up], so hopefully that will work in our favour.”

Reds boss Danny Wilson will give late fitness tests to defender Jack Hunt, midfielder Kelvin Etuhu and striker Marcus Pedersen ahead of the club’s penultimate game of the season.

But centre-backs Peter Ramage and Lewin Nyatanga will definitely miss out through injury.

“We’re full of hope,” stressed Wilson. “The one thing that’s really pleased me with the players is that we’ve only looked at the next game.

“Whether or not they do look at it [the battle to avoid relegation], well I’m sure some do and some don’t.

“I’m sure some get turned on by it [the battle] and some get turned off by it.

“Players, as individuals, know they’ve got to do whatever they feel comfortable with to get motivated. Whatever floats your boat I suppose.

“But we’ve got a chance. Beating Charlton [2-1 away on Tuesday night] has helped us bring a few teams a lot closer to us. It was very important we got a win quickly after losing to Bolton. If we’d have lost the game on Tuesday night then we’d have been going into this match with a completely different mentality.”