Barnsley bounced back from last weekend’s defeat against Luton Town to claim a point against Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium.
The Reds, backed by over 1,500 travelling fans from South Yorkshire, made the trip to Greater Manchester looking for their first away win of the season.
Both sides have been in similar form as of late, and that translated onto the pitch. It was a very tight affair early on, with both teams looking to gain a foothold in the match.
But the Reds were definitely the brighter of the two teams. The high intensity, pressing football that Head Coach Daniel Stendel has instilled into the players was well and truly on show as the away side won the ball back in numbers and looked to attack quickly.
Dimitri Cavaré and Luke Thomas, in particular, were enjoying most of the joy on the right-hand side, linking up well and looking to get the ball into the forwards.
The first opportunity of the game came to Conor Chaplin as he looked to be in on goal but unfortunately struggled to get his shot away. But the best chance of the half was a blistering strike from Mamadou Thiam following a lay off from a free kick. The forward hit it with real venom, but Wigan ‘keeper David Marshall pulled off a great save up to his left to keep the scores level.
Despite the Reds being in the ascendancy for longer periods, the home side started to grow into the game as the half progressed. The clear plan was to get balls into the box to their frontman, but the defence stood tall to thwart any Latics attack that came their way.
HALF-TIME: Wigan Athletic 0-0 Barnsley
It was a similar story after the interval as Barnsley continued to attack with great pace on the flanks through Mallik Wilks and the lively Thomas. The relentless high press forced a great chance as Thomas intercepted the ball high up the pitch, took on his man with ease and squared the ball to Chaplin in the box, who couldn’t quite wrap his foot around it and was unfortunate not to score.
Winning the ball back high became a regular occurrence for Stendel’s men, with it being the cause of many chances. The next was from Mike Bähre, who struck the ball goal bound on the half volley but Marshall was equal to his effort.
Wigan’s opportunities were few and far between throughout the game and that was down to the Reds’ impressive defensive display. However, a free kick from Charlie Mulgrew was flicked towards goal, forcing a tremendous reaction save from Brad Collins to keep it at 0-0 despite being relatively untested all day.
As the fourth official held up his board to indicate added time, Barnsley were reduced to ten men when Ben Williams was shown a straight red card for a late challenge on Lee Evans.
However, despite a late rally from the hosts, Barnsley still managed to stand strong and defended the aerial onslaught excellently, gaining their first away point of the season.
WIGAN XI: Marshall, Byrne, Robinson, Morsy (c), Lowe, Massey, Mulgrew, Jacobs, Moore, Williams, Dunkley.
Subs: Jones, Macleod, Evans, Garner, Kipre, Naismith, Gelhardt.
REDS XI: Collins, Cavaré, Andersen, Halme, B Williams, Thomas (Styles, 90), Sibbick, Bähre, Wilks (Pinillos, 90), Chaplin (Schmidt, 80), Thiam.
Subs: Walton, J Williams, Oduor, Green.