Reds assistant manager Dave Flitcroft reckons that football clubs of the stature of Manchester United are the ones to study if Barnsley are to improve their standing in the football world.
Speaking after watching the Manchester United v Morecambe friendly on Monday evening (with one eye in particular on the League Two club ahead of next week’s Carling Cup tie at Oakwell), Flitcroft said: “If you want to be the best then you’ve got to study the best.
“We keep an eye on Manchester United because it’s a chance to look at other players and because of the way they do things.
“Warren Joyce has done a great job there bringing the younger players through.
“Building a team is a jigsaw puzzle that is never finished and if we are going to replicate what we did at Rochdale then you have to keep an eye on things.”
Flitcroft heaped praise on the Barnsley players ahead of the season’s opener against Nottingham Forest at the City ground.
He said: “The players have been incredible since day one and their attitude has been second to none.
“You look at what we are trying to do in terms of the right food, rest and recovery and the players have done it to the highest calibre.
“Another blessing is how much time players and staff are spending together and it’s important to develop a social understanding which goes into making a good team.
“Just as at Rochdale, we are working within certain financial restraints, but we are keen to emulate what we did there.”
Barnsley are expected to offer trialist Ricardo Vaz Te a contract before their Championship curtain-raiser with Forest.
The Portuguese ace has has scored twice in the friendly fixtures against Grimsby Town and then in the 5-0 mauling of Scunthorpe United last weekend. Vaz Te is likely to be handed a one-year deal.