New Barnsley boss: The runners and riders after Reds sack Danny Wilson

In the frame, left to right, Nigel Worthington, Craig Hignett, Dave Jones and Gary Johnson
In the frame, left to right, Nigel Worthington, Craig Hignett, Dave Jones and Gary Johnson
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The Barnsley hierarchy may already have someone in mind to take over from Danny Wilson who was today sacked as manager, a little over a year after taking over, but if they haven’t, we’ve jotted down a list of potential candidates for the vacant post.


Wilson sacked by Barnsley

Gary Johnson

Perhaps surprisingly, just been sacked by Yeovil but Gary Johnson is a manager with impressive pedigree and one who knows how to get the most out of teams. His biggest successes have come in the West Country as boss at Bristol City and Yeovil, whom he took to the Championship via the play off and beating Sheffield United along the way, but Johnson is potentially one of the best men available at the minute. Whether or not he would want to move up north is another matter but the manner of his achievements, espcially at a less-fashionable club like Yeovil should mark him as a prime candidate.

Nigel Worthington

Worthington has been kicking his heels since leaving York City earlier this season. The former Owls full back was probably a little harsh on himself in resigning from that role having kept the team in League Two then taken them to the play offs the following season. Admittedly results were poor at the beginning of this campaign but a manager of his experience will have surely been able to pull York back out of the mire. Having started out as player manager at Blackpool, Worthington has managed at international level with Northern Ireland and in the top flight after taking Norwich to the Premier League in 2004.

Brian Laws

The former Sheffield Wednesday manager has been out of managerial work since being sacked as boss of Scunthorpe at the tail end of 2013. Laws had three different spells in charge of the Iron and spent three years at Hillsborough having made a name for himself in his first post at Grimsby Town. Currently working as a radio pundit, Laws will still have plenty to offer and is well used to managing at this level.


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Craig Hignett

A Barnsley legend as a player, Hignett hasn’t got a great deal of experience in coaching but the Reds are a club close to his heart after spending two seasons at Oakwell in the late 90s. His last job was as assistant at Middlesbrough, another of his former clubs, whom he left this season after an alleged fall-out with boss Aitor Karanka, while previously the 45 year old was assistant to Colin Cooper at Hartlepool.

Dave Jones

Been out of the game for over a year now and where he would have once been looking at clubs in the Championship at least, Jones may have to rebuild his managerial reputation again. Knows football in south Yorkshire having been boss at Wednesday and, of course, took the Owls out of League One in 2012. Also took Stockport County into the Championship in his first managerial role and got Wolves promoted to the Premier League for the first time in nearly 20 years by beating Sheffield United in the play off final.

Paul Jewell

Another who has been out of the game for a while, Jewell’s name cropped up recently when he was due to come in as assistant manager to Tony Pulis at West Brom before pulling out of that following the addition of Gerry Francis to the backroom staff and the suggestions that Jewell would have to take a pay cut to allow the former QPR boss to come in. The ex Owls, Wigan, Bradford, Derby County and Ipswich manager has been without a job since October 2012 and is more likely to be seen on Sky Sports as a pundit, but having at least shown his willingness to get back into coaching, Barnsley could be one that interests him.

Richie Barker

A bit left-field this one but Barker may fancy his chances of giving management another go after cutting his teeth and winning promotion at Bury before failing at Crawley Town and having a disappointing period at Portsmouth, where to be fair, Jose Mourinho would have struggled. As a player he knew his way around with a nomadic career taking him from Ards in the Irish Premier League to Rotherham and Mansfield among others. Currently Head of coaching at MK Dons.

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