New boss Daniel Stendel understands why Barnsley are among the favourites to secure League One promotion before a ball’s been kicked.
German Stendel was unveiled to the media at his first official press conference yesterday by chief executive Gauthier Ganaye.
Right-hand man Christopher Stern was on hand to translate. Stendel appeared to understand English well, but preferred to answer the majority of questions in German via Stern.
Stendel outlined the high-pressing, attacking style he has taught the squad.
Goalkeeper Adam Davies has been named captain for tomorrow’s opening game of the season against Oxford United at Oakwell after impressing the head coach with his leadership skills during pre-season.
The Reds’ top brass have taken two huge gambles heading into the new campaign, where promotion is the target, by going for another unknown foreign coach after the Jose Morais debacle and keeping confidence in the squad which was relegated last term.
Stendel said: “As a relegated team, you’ll always be favourites to get promotion.
“There are other teams like Sunderland who will have a great role in this campaign, but I want us to be the team to decide whether it’s a good or bad season. We’re looking for it to be a very successful season.
“Myself and the players all have the ambition to get back to the Championship and that’s the message.
“I’m excited to learn and experience English football and League One.
“It’s my first job in a foreign country and I’m looking forward to it.
“It wasn’t a burning ambition to come to England, but I’m pleased I made the decision because it’s been positive so far.”
Winger Ryan Hedges and wing-back Zeki Fryers are expected to be sidelined for between three and six weeks through injury.
With less than a week to go before the transfer window shut, Stendel believes his squad is good enough without making any additions.