Barnsley centre-back Alfie Mawson has hailed his side’s hard-fought point against Sheffield United as ‘massive’.
Saturday’s goalless draw at a packed Bramall Lane all-but ended the home side’s faint hopes of clinching a play-off place, whilst keeping the Reds’ top six chances firmly alive.
With nearest rivals Gillingham slipping up at home to strugglers Shrewsbury, Barnsley leapt into sixth spot with two games to go.
It was the third clean sheet on the spin for Paul Heckingbottom’s men, and Mawson is delighted to be part of a back line that is providing the perfect platform for the recent run of results.
“We’ll take the point because it’s a big point against a massive side,” said Mawson, who has been ever present at the heart of the Reds’ defence this season.
“They’re a team that were tipped to win the league comfortably. We’re comfortably in front of them now going into the last two games and hopefully we can get into the play-offs.
“It’s a massive point and clean sheet. We’ll take the positives; we were resolute and strong and we just ground out that clean sheet that we’ve been doing so well recently.”
The atmosphere around the city was heightened on Saturday lunchtime as 3,694 Reds fans turned up to contribute to the Blades’ second biggest attendance of the campaign.
And Mawson was thrilled to be part of such a cracking contest which had everything a derby day needs – except a goal.
“Playing at Wembley you had that massive crowd but to have it in a derby just down the road from where I live it’s crazy because it’s right on top of you,” he added.
“Both sets of fans were loud and you knew it was a derby - you felt that. You’ve got to keep a calm head but that nice bit of fire in the belly as well.
“It was brilliant, it was a good point and hopefully it will be enough.”