Having watched his side grind out a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Middlesbrough, Gerhard Struber was full of praise – especially for his backline, who kept a second consecutive clean sheet.
The Reds built on last weekend’s sensational win at Fulham, with the Head Coach tweaking his line-up and playing a back three – reverting from his traditional diamond formation.
“In every action, I had the feeling that we were the winners today,” began Struber. “We were amazing and I’m very proud of my team. I hope we can bring this energy in the next few weeks and make it difficult for opponents against us.
“We believe and we were clear in our plan. We had a different formation to the other games before and my three centre-backs created a special performance. I think our defence style was key that we win. We celebrate a big win against a special team; especially with [Britt] Assombalonga and [Ashley] Fletcher – they are two strikers with a big quality, and our defenders gave them no chances.”
It was a gallant team effort from Barnsley, who battled for every ball from the first whistle – epitomised by Aapo Halme’s desire to block a goal-bound shot inside the opening three minutes.
That commitment ran through the entire side and Struber is hoping for a similar performance when the Reds travel to Hull City on Wednesday evening.
“The whole team worked very strong together and we had a brilliant training week – this was key that we won against this big team,” continued the Austrian.
“Two clean sheets, two victories and six points – I hope we can bring the same energy in the next game against Hull. The atmosphere in the dressing room was always OK, right now it is top.
“After Birmingham it was a very difficult situation for everyone at the club, but we stuck together, worked hard and stuck to our style and we have shown everyone that we have a great self-confidence.”