BarnsleyBARNSLEY VS LEEDS UNITED (Tuesday 14th September)

As it seems Barnsley fans are still struggling to grasp the concept of the internet, I was unable to find one who was willing to take part in the interview ahead of our midweek clash at Oakwell (Tuesday 14th September) and it wasn’t for a lack of trying! Instead I am going to do a short run down of recent events at both clubs and tell you how they will affect the first Yorkshire derby of the season for both clubs.


Barnsley come into the game on the back of a 2-1 defeat at Norwich but prior to that game they had put together an impressive run of results, including a 2-0 win at home to promotion favourites Middlesbrough and a 3-3 draw at Ashton Gate against big spenders Bristol City. They are currently occupying 11th place in The Championship, but a win on Tuesday night would put them level with us on 10 points. They will be no pushovers as they are unbeaten and yet to concede a goal at Oakwell this season.

Leeds come into the game as one of the Championship’s form teams of the moment. After 3 back to back wins, it is fair to say that most fans will be pleasantly surprised by our strong start to the season. One thing that has really impressed me about the team so far is the strong team spirit and never say die attitude that the players seem to have adopted, coming from behind to earn vital points on 3 occasions (Forest, Millwall & Swansea). Our strong start sees us sitting in a play-off spot and only 3 points behind early pace setters QPR. As always our fans have travelled to away games in their numbers and Tuesday night’s game will be no exception with around 7,000 Leeds fans expected to make the trip to Oakwell which will surely have a positive effect on our boys. All the ingredients are there for a fantastic Yorkshire derby and hopefully another 3 points for the whites!

Team News

Barnsley have just signed Scotland striker Garry O’Connor on loan from Birmingham. He could add some much needed firepower to their front line or could just turn out to be the next McSheffrey! He is likely to partner the nephew of former Leeds legend Eddie Gray, Andy Gray up front for the tykes. Another player to look out for is former Liverpool academy product, winger Adam Hammill who is joint top scorer with Gray so far this season with 2 goals each. On the topic of Barnsley’s attack, ex-Leeds hero Liam Dickinson is likely to feature on the bench for the home team. I’m sure he will receive a warm reception from the travelling supporters after his great efforts for us whilst on loan the season before last!

As we know, Simon Grayson doesn’t like to change a winning team but he was forced to do so at the weekend. In form ‘keeper, Kasper Schmeichel missed out due to a foot injury and has also been ruled out of featuring against Barnsley. Blackburn ‘keeper Jason Brown, was brought in on a months loan as cover and he is likely to be on the bench again with Shane Higgs continuing in goal. It is understood that the reason behind Lloyd Sam’s absence from the starting line-up against Swansea was an ankle strain. It is unclear as to whether he will return, or if Max Gradel, who impressed on Saturday will keep his place. Another likely absence is that of captain Richard Naylor, as previous injuries prevent him from playing 2 games in such a short space of time. Alex Bruce is the obvious choice to replace him at centre-back with Jonny Howson taking over the captaincy. Long term absentees Robert Snodgrass and Billy Paynter are back in training but will not feature at Barsnley. It is understood they will both take part in a friendly behind closed doors at Thorp Arch during the week. It was confirmed on that new signings Amdy Faye and Ramon Nunez will not feature.

It looks like we will see a very similar team to the one that beat Swansea on Saturday. Our strong start to the season sees Leeds as definite favourites despite being away from home and with the help of our travelling army, I expect Leeds to go to Oakwell and do the business, although it won’t be easy.

Prediction: Barnsley 1-3 Leeds United

Marching On Together!