Robins backs Harewood to get stronger

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MARK Robins believes the best is yet to come from Blackpool loan striker Marlon Harewood.

The Barnsley boss was frustrated with Harewood’s performance in the club’s goalless draw with Derby County last Saturday.

But the former West Ham United and Aston Villa forward came up trumps on Tuesday night with both goals as the Reds beat Scunthorpe United 2-1 at Oakwell, there first in seven games.

“Marlon scored two good goals, that’s [scoring goals] is what we brought him in to do,” Robins told The Star.

“He’s come to a new club and he’ll have wanted to score his first goal as quickly as possible.

“He’s got two and played well, I’m sure they will do him the world of good going forward.

“Marlon was out for six weeks before he came to us with a hamstring injury, so it looks as though he’s been feeling his way back into matches. But there’s no doubting he’s a very good player. He’s strong, quick and has an eye for goal. Hopefully he’s going to score lots more goals for us.

“Marlon was better for us than he has been and got his reward with the two goals. With him and Danny Haynes up front we’re trying to utilise the pace because that’s their best asset.”

Victory for the Reds, their first since a 2-0 home win over Preston at the start of February, has been a welcome boost for Robins and his squad.

And with 10 games remaining, Robins has urged his team to go on a run which will secure them a top half finish in the Championship - or even more.

“Who knows what’s going to happen from now on until the end of the season?” added Robins.

“We could go undefeated for our last 10 games, or we could win half of them.

“But right now I don’t want to set a target and risk falling short of that, there is still a lot to play for with 30 points up for grabs.

“We want to put as many points on the board as possible. We have been a mid-table side for most of the season, but we’re trying to take this club forward and we’re putting a long-term plan in place for that.”

The Reds visit fourth-placed Cardiff City on Sunday at the Cardiff City Stadium with their hosts having lost their last two league matches against Ipswich Town and Crystal Palace.

But Robins knows his side face a “really tough test” even though the Bluebirds have suffered a recent dip in form.

“They [Cardiff] are a top side with a top manager,” said Robins. “I’ve got a lot of respect for their manager Dave Jones, he’s done a great job there.”