Barnsley U23s extended their unbeaten run to eight games with a 0-0 draw against Sheffield Wednesday in the Professional Development League on Wednesday afternoon.
Blustery conditions wreaked havoc on what had promised to be an entertaining South Yorkshire derby at the Oakwell Training Ground, with neither side able to sustain attacks as the ball swerved out of play time and time again.
The visitors had the first opportunity of the game when Alex Hunt’s curling free-kick was palmed away by Jack Walton inside the opening couple of minutes.
From then on, the Reds’ stopper was rarely troubled but had to have his wits about him with a number of testing back passes and through balls that had been caught in the wind.
Sam Fielding came close to giving Barnsley the lead just before the interval, but his header from Jordan Barnett’s corner drifted narrowly wide of the upright.
HALF-TIME: Barnsley 0-0 Sheffield Wednesday
Despite the Reds having the wind with them in the first half, they didn’t let the elements unsettle their rhythm after the break and they tried to implement their free-flowing, attacking play.
Kieran Feeney’s industrious performance spearheading the attack almost led to a half-chance for Elliot Simoes, but the winger was denied by a last-gasp challenge by Ash Baker.
Barnsley created a few openings with precise through balls into the Owls’ penalty area, but Freddie Nievsen and Jack Lee repelled everything the hosts threw at them with resolute defending.
With time running out, Matty Wolfe – completing his first 90 minutes since returning from injury – picked out the run of Simoes. Cameron McCulloch came charging off his line and the Reds’ winger opted to chip the ball towards goal, but unfortunately it hit the Wednesday ‘keeper on the head and bounced behind for a corner.
The result means Barnsley stay sixth, but move to within a point of Crewe Alexandra and two behind Bolton Wanderers in fourth. The Owls climb above Nottingham Forest into seventh.
REDS XI: Walton, Helliwell (Moon, 39), Ige, Fielding (c), Barnett, Willard (Berkovits, 55), Chisholm, Bird, Wolfe, Simoes, Feeney (Sang, 68).
Not used: Greatorex, Aramburu.
OWLS XI: McCulloch, Baker, Nievesen, Lee, West, Preston, Kirby (c), Hunt, Grant, Damba, Shaw.
Subs: Borukov, Render, Brennan, Hughes, Waldock.