Speaking after our 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough on Saturday afternoon, Valérien Ismaël praised his team for their work ethic and desire to grind out a result.
Barnsley limited their visitors to very few opportunities throughout the contest and could have won by an even greater margin on a productive day at Oakwell.
“It was a difficult game,” reflected Ismaël. “In such a game, it’s important to stay patient and to find a way to win and we did it in the second half. I think we controlled a lot of situations and didn’t concede a shot on target – it showed the quality in our defence at the minute to get the clean sheet.
“I think we have a lot of positive aspects and with the win we cross the 70 points line; it’s a massive result for us and we created a gap between us and seventh position, so it’s a good win for us.”
With Reading falling to defeat against Watford on Friday evening, the Reds knew that three points against Boro could prove to be decisive as the season reaches boiling point.
Five points now separate Barnsley and the Royals in seventh place and Ismaël wants his side to seize the initiative heading into the final few games of a breathless campaign.
“For all the teams in the top six, you saw that the result from Reading gave everyone the final push to win, to use the mistake and create a gap,” continued our Head Coach. “Now it’s an advantage and now it’s in our hands to keep that advantage and concentrate for the next match against Coventry.
“We are in a better position than last week but we are not over the line; the job is not done now. We are in a better position and it will give the boys, for sure, a big, big motivation for the next game.”
You can watch Valérien’s post-match interview on iFollow Barnsley.