Will Calligan is looking for Barnsley to build on their tremendous 7-1 victory over Crewe Alexandra last week as they head into Saturday’s Yorkshire derby with Leeds United.
Both Kieran Feeney and Tommy Willard scored twice for the young Reds, while Trialist, Jordan Helliwell and Brad Binns were also on target as the U18s secured their second win of the Professional Development League campaign.
“It was really good; I thought we dominated the game,” said Calligan. “Our pressing was too much for them, playing out – and they carried on doing it. I think it was a long time coming, for the past three weeks we’ve deserved more points than we’ve actually got, so it was definitely long overdue.
“It’s a big confidence boost going into the Leeds game and it’s a big game for some of us lads from Yorkshire.”
Leeds come into the game on the back of a 4-2 victory over bottom of the table Hull City last weekend, and, with five goals to his name, Nohan Kenneh is one of the division’s top scorers.
The Whites are fourth in the league and can potentially go as high as second with a victory, and Calligan is relishing the prospect of a difficult encounter at Thorp Arch Training Ground.
“It’s going to be a great test for us,” admitted the versatile Reds youngster. “We’re expecting a very physical match; they like to play like us – pressing high – so playing out from the back will be different from how it has been in the last few games.”
A dynamic winger by trade, Calligan has spent the majority of this campaign playing in an unfamiliar left-back role for Adam Murray and Tom Harban.
However, the 17-year-old has adapted well to the defensive responsibility and his natural attacking instincts are proving to be beneficial for the side.
“It’s going well,” insisted Calligan. “Left back is a new position for me but I’m learning and the coaches are helping me out a lot. I think, coming from left-wing to left-back, I can offer something in attack, but I just need to improve on the defensive side of my game.
“Both full-backs have been told to push on and help out the attackers, and I think it’s brought another attacking threat to the team.”