Speaking after our 2-1 victory over Birmingham City on Tuesday evening, Valérien Ismaël says he wants Barnsley to continue their fine displays over the coming weeks.
The Reds, trailing to Scott Hogan’s opener, hit back through a Cauley Woodrow penalty before Callum Styles’ late half-volley snatched all three points at St. Andrew’s.
It was no less than the visitors deserved on a chilly evening in the second city, and Ismaël believes that it was the perfect response after back-to-back defeats.
“I’m very delighted about the result, for sure,” said our Head Coach. “We told the guys before the game that we have to have two purposes. The first one was to sustain our performance; we did it very well and the second was to put more mentality on the top and we showed exactly what we wanted to see in the Championship.
“We came back into the game and it was exactly the fight we wanted and the guys have shown a very good response. We are delighted about the win and the big points, but we move quickly into the next game on Friday against Bournemouth.
“We need another great performance, but this time we are going into this game with more confidence and mentality because we know we can come back into the game, believe in ourselves, our principles and strengths.”
Over the past few weeks, Ismaël has been keen to stress the importance of being able to make five substitutes, with the Reds’ boss utilising his bench to the fullest on three of the four occasions since the rule was re-introduced on 18 November.
He opted to make a quadruple change heading into the last 15 minutes against City, and it proved to be a masterstroke as Barnsley bagged the winner shortly after.
“It was to give a signal to the team that it’s time; it was the feeling to say we need more fresh legs in the middle to win the second ball and to play first time deep, to try and create a lot of one v one situations, to play near to the opposition box and that’s what we wanted,” asserted Ismaël.
“The guys came in, did it very well and showed that we need all the players with a strong mentality. But we can’t enjoy it too long because the next game is on Friday.”
You can watch Valérien’s post-match interview on iFollow Barnsley.