Barnsley: Ryan Hedges return ‘will allow Reds to change style”

Ryan Hedges (right)
Ryan Hedges (right)

Assistant head coach Andreas Winkler believes the return of Ryan Hedges is a welcome boost for Barnsley.

The former Yeovil winger has not featured under head coach Daniel Stendel yet this season due to injury.

Hedges was named on the bench for last Saturday’s postponed clash with Burton at Oakwell and continued to build up his fitness in the Reds’ Under-23s’ clash with Nottingham Forest earlier this week.

The 23-year-old played the first half of the 3-0 defeat to Forest and is expected to be pushing for a place in Stendel’s starting line-up at Fleetwood on Saturday.

“Ryan gives us more options,” Winkler said.  

“He is left-footed, very quick. We don’t have so many players on the wings and he is a winger. It gives us a good chance to change our style.”

While Hedges is back in first-team contention, the same cannot be said for new signing Cauley Woodrow.

The striker has yet to make his Barnsley debut since his deadline-day move from Fulham due to a niggling injury.

Woodrow is still expected to be out of action for another fortnight and Winkler cannot wait to see him on the pitch.  

“The one time he trained with us you could see he is different to the other guys,” he said.

“He is something special so we are looking forward to having him back in the team.”

The Tykes’ unbeaten start to the League One season came to an end at Coventry, where they have not won since 1923, last time out.

Stendel’s side were undone by a set-piece as Jordan Willis headed in the winner 10 minutes from time at the Ricoh Arena.

“We can do more, for sure. It is a difficult thing,” the German added.

“You can train, train, and train, but opponent teams really focus on set-pieces. They have good headers, they defend very good and attack set-pieces very good.

“Sometimes it is not always the formations and players involved in the set-pieces, sometimes you have to be a bit lucky.

“The club did not get Daniel Stendel from Germany to improve the set-pieces, it was to implement the style of football.

“Right now it is not a main part, but it is an important part for us.”

Adam Davies and Alex Mowatt, both out of contract at the end of the season, have played integral roles in the Tykes’ impressive start to the season.

But Winkler said: “We don’t talk about contracts right now, but I think at the end of November and December we sit down with the CEO and talk about it.”