Reds will ‘repay’ their loyal fans

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BARNSLEY midfielder Stephen Dawson would be “gutted” if the Championship club were to get relegated this season.

The Reds are gunning to make it an eighth successive season in England’s second tier.

And after wins over Brighton and Watford, Dawson hopes the club can pull together for one final push.

“As a footballer you get paid to out there on to the pitch and work,” said Dawson. “That’s what we’ve got to do for our remaining games.

“The fans pay money and we’ve got to repay them with some hard-working performances. I’m sure we will do that.

“At the end of the day you plays for the fans, yourself, your family, friends and for the club. It’s not so much about pride, it’s more about being professional for me. You don’t want to be known as a failure and no one wants a relegation on their CV. I’d be gutted if we got relegated. But the whole squad is confident we can stay up.”

Dawson’s two-month lay-off with ankle ligament damage is over and, while he is desperate to get back into the’ first team, he would welcome extra competition if the club re-sign Manchester United youngster Ryan Tunnicliffe on loan.

Tunnicliffe’s one-month loan spell expired on Wednesday having played just three games for the Reds.

But Dawson said: “Hopefully Ryan stays with us for longer. The more players we have the better, it can only push you harder.

“He’s done well for us since he came in and so has Kelvin Etuhu while I’ve been injured. I travel in to training every day with Kelvin and I’m delighted for him he’s done so well.

The Reds, who have nine league matches remaining to retain their Championship status, return to domestic action next Saturday at Sheffield Wednesday. Dawson is in contention to return to the starting line-up, but Stoke City loanee Rory Delap (calf) and fellow defender Jimmy McNulty (ankle) are both facing fitness battles to be fit.

The Reds will also be without left-back Scott Golbourne, who is ruled out for the rest of the season after a knee operation, as well as injured midfielder Paul Digby (hip).

Wednesday loan striker Chris O’Grady is cup-tied.