Fed up Hill defends new Reds recruits

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BARNSLEY boss Keith Hill is sick of being told some of his current players do not meet the Championship grade.

Hill worked hard during the summer with a limited budget to make seven new permanent signings and three loan signings. But very few of them were big name recruits simply because there was much less cash on offer for transfers for this season.

So Hill used his extensive knowledge of the lower leagues and signed four players from League One, giving them all the opportunity to make the jump up to play at a higher level.

Striker Craig Davies, midfielders Matt Done and David Perkins, as well as defender Scott Wiseman have all made the move up to the second tier of English football.

And, after five games all four players have not looked out of place, although Davies is desperate to bag his first goal of the campaign.

“Too many times I’m being told these are League One and League Two players, but they’re not,” said Hill.

“They’re Championship players and they’ll go down in history when you look at the history books at the end of the season. These players are going to have Championship experience under their belts, but they’ve got to be given time to expose themselves to the enormity of the Championship - and so have I because I’m an unbelievable manager.”

The Reds finished 17th last season, their highest finish for five seasons since winning promotion back to the Championship. But Hill is concerned that some supporters are unrealistic with their expectations for this season, especially with reduced financial backing for new players.

“I knew the remit when I came to this football club. For me I think that remit has been explained to the supporters, but I think they probably haven’t listened,” added Hill.

“It’s a massive learning curve. I’m learning about the calibre of players we’re playing against. I want to play expansive, attractive football. That’s always been my philosophy, but it’s about an end result and I might have to sacrifice a little bit of that.

“People have got to accept that, especially at home, because if we’re so expansive against the very good teams we’re going to get punished.

“It’s trying to get the balance between what I want and what I need. I’m sure I can get that from this squad of players. The players do want to do well for Barnsley Football Club, for themselves and for me. I’m encouraged and we’ll stick together and we’ll fight through whatever problems we do experience along the way.

“I don’t consider myself to be under any pressure. I can deal with whatever’s thrown at me.”