Paul Heckingbottom's Reds Suffer First Defeat Of Pre-Season
Despite an incredibly spirited performance, Barnsley suffered their first defeat of pre-season, losing 3-0 at home to Ronald Koeman’s Everton.
Kevin Mirallas’ ninth minute free kick opened the scoring but Alfie Mawson and Sam Winnall both came close to levelling seconds later.
Adam Davies produced a sublime save to prevent Gerard Deulofeu doubling the lead and counterpart Joel Robles had to be alert to stop Andy Yiadom’s driven effort.
Elliot Lee danced through the Everton defence moments before half time while Marc Roberts’ looping header was cleared off the line by Brendan Galloway.
Sam Winnall headed inches over the crossbar early in the second half but Deulofeu slotted home the second on the hour.
Ross Barkley smashed home a third with 17 minutes remaining for Everton and despite the best efforts of George Moncur and Yiadom, the hosts were unable to break through Toffees rearguard.
A fast-paced start saw Hammill’s powerful effort on goal blocked by the leg of Brendan Galloway while Kevin Mirallas’ deflected effort forced a smart save from Adam Davies.
Adam Hammill’s ninth minute foul on the edge of the area brought the first goal of the game, as Mirallas bent the free kick over the wall and just beyond the gloves of Davies.
Barnsley almost immediately levelled as Alfie Mawson volleyed Sam Winnall’s knock down against the woodwork and the latter’s close range header drifted just wide.
Davies got down quickly to deny Deulofeu doubling the Toffees’ tally while a smart corner routine saw Andy Yiadom’s ferocious drive parried to safety by Joel Robles.
Deulofeu continued to torment the Reds back line, forcing a flying save from Davies but the Reds almost tied the contest on the half hour as Yiadom volleyed Hammill’s deep cross just wide.
Four minutes before the break, Deulofeu raced forward but his dangerous low ball was turned away to safety by a combination of Davies and Yiadom.
Elliot Lee was smartly denied one-on-one by Robles a minute before half time and only a goal-line clearance by Galloway prevented Roberts levelling at half time.
An excellent Reds move allowed Winnall to find some space in the area but could not convert Hammill’s delicious delivery four minutes after the restart.
Roberts did well to block Aaron Lennon’s low shot but another surging run from Deulofeu on the hour brought the game’s second goal.
An incisive through ball from Ross Barkley allowed the Spaniard to run through unopposed and slot home the visitors’ second.
The hosts continued their positive attacking play with George Moncur trying to create openings and going close on 70 minutes, turning smartly and forcing a good save out of Robles.
Stefan Payne fired the rebound into the side netting and Yiadom rolled an effort just wide of the upright before the Toffees added their third 17 minutes from time.
Quick passing on the edge of the area allowed England international Barkley to wriggle into space and fire left footed past the despairing dive of Davies.
Shani Tarashaj blasted into the side netting seven minutes from time and Aiden McGeady fired over as over 7,000 fans saw the Reds suffer their first defeat of pre-season.
Reds: Davies, Yiadom, Roberts, Mawson, White (Evans, 84’ ), Hammill, Moncur, Hourihane (Scowen, 62’ ), Lee (Bree, 46’ ), Bradshaw (Payne, 62’ ), Winnall.
Subs: Townsend, D’Almeida, Nyatanga, Watkins, Tuton.
Everton: Robles, Davies (Coleman, 46’ ), Holgate (Pennington, 83’ ), Galloway (Funes Mori, 46’ ), Baines (Oviedo, 62’ ), Besic (Grant, 62’ ), Gibson (McGeady, 62’ ), Lennon, Dowell (Barkley, 46’ ), Mirallas (Cleverley 62’ ), Deulofeu (Tanashaj, 62’ ).
Subs: Stekelenburg, Grant.