Barnsley fans react to promotion

Barnsley won promotion back to the Championship last night, after Portsmouth lost against Peterborough.

The defeat for Kenny Jackett’s men meant that Pompey could no longer catch Barnsley in the table, confirming the Tykes’ return to the second tier at the first time of asking.

It was a weird scenario, with the Oakwell club being promoted without even kicking a ball, meaning that full scale celebrations were put on halt until the weekend.

Regardless, many have reacted to the promotion by singing the praises of boss Daniel Stendel and his team. JUS News spoke to fans, journalists and even politicians to see the reaction to the promotion.

Doug O’Kane, sports editor at the Barnsley Chronicle, put the successes down to the counter-attacking style that Stendel has used.

He said: “Daniel Stendel has done an excellent job of picking up a young team after the disappointment of relegation and getting them to play a high-pressing, counter-attacking style which has overwhelmed most opposition.

“They have been unbeaten at home for the first time since 1968 and collected the most points and clean sheets in the club’s history.

“All the players have done well but the spine of the team has been the goalkeeper and captain Adam Davies, centre-back and Player of the Year Ethan Pinnock and midfielder Alex Mowatt.

“Strikers Cauley Woodrow and Kieffer Moore both have 16 league goals each despite both being injured for almost half the season.”

Promotion is a success that stretches further than on-pitch achievements. It will boost the local economy, as well as increase the overall mood in the town.

Dan Jarvis, Labour MP for Barnsley central, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Barnsley FC have been promoted to the Championship.

“I warmly congratulate everyone at Barnsley FC and our fantastic supporters, who have all been a credit to the club and the town.

“Promotion is a massive boost for Barnsley, it has lifted our spirits and is a major economic stimulus for the town.”

After relegation last season, the Tykes entered this campaign with an uncertain backdrop, but work off the field in the summer planted the seeds for a swift return, and the fruits have joyously arrived now.

Melanie Callan, a season ticket holder at Oakwell, thinks that the recruitment and development of fringe players has been crucial to the successes.

She said: “Stendel put faith in players who seemed surplus to requirements under the previous regime and reaped the rewards with Cavaré, Mowatt, McGeehan and Thiam.

“Our analytical approach also gave us an edge as it unearthed the likes of Pinnock, Woodrow, Bähre, Dougall and Styles.”

Loyalty is something that many Barnsley fans have pinpointed as a reason for the success, with Stendel turning to players who were perhaps under performing in the Championship.

Spencer Davies, a Barnsley fan, felt that Stendel’s fresh ideas were crucial to the successes this term.

He said: “We kept the squad together and fresh ideas were brought in which everyone at the club has embraced after the circus that was Jose Morais.

“Mowatt is a fine example of this. He was frozen out last season and been a standout performer this season.”

Barnsley can win the League One title if they better Luton’s result on Saturday, but fans will settle for second place if not, knowing that heavyweights such as Sunderland and Portsmouth would’ve been fancied to tip them to promotion pre-season.

Players will get a deserved chance to celebrate with fans, with details for an open top bus celebration set to be announced in the coming days, but attention will soon turn to trying to establish themselves as a Championship club, after a failed attempt last time they went up.