In the wake of our 1-0 win at Huddersfield Town on Wednesday evening, it’s strange to think that less than 12 months ago Barnsley were staring relegation to Sky Bet League One dead in the face.
The events that have unfolded since Clarke Oduor’s dramatic late winner at Brentford back in July have been absolutely unprecedented, but here we are: six points clear in the play-off places with just three games remaining.
After putting in a man of the match performance against the Terriers, Michael Sollbauer admits that no one could have predicted our surge up the table but believes that he and his teammates fully deserve their lofty league position.
“We haven’t had the time to look back but, when you think about it, it’s a really great journey that we’ve gone through in the last year,” said Sollbauer, speaking to iFollow Barnsley. “It’s very special also, for me. I think 12 months ago, no one expected this but you can see we’re a good group and we’re working all together – not only the players, but the staff around the club.
“When you have a good commitment, great things are possible and, at the moment, we’re in a really good position and, in my opinion, we fully deserve it. Now it’s important to get it done; we’re in a good position but it’s not the time to celebrate anything.
“We can all be really proud and the good thing is that we’ll keep on going.”
Victory was secured thanks to Daryl Dike’s wonderful second half overhead kick on a night that had the potential to end in frustration for the Reds, who came close on numerous occasions before eventually making that crucial breakthrough.
It’s our on-loan American forward’s ninth goal since arriving from Orlando City in February, and Sollbauer insists that you cannot understate the impact he has had at Oakwell.
“This lad, for me, is really important,” asserted our Austrian defender. “He’s 20-years-old; he’s not an experienced player but he’s come from abroad, alone, from the United States. But this group is helping him a lot, he’s helping us a lot – not only with his goals which, as a striker, are important, but with his performances.
“From the first day, he’s been a big part in the team. I’m really happy he’s here and I’m pretty sure he will help us in the upcoming weeks and games. He’s a huge part and is doing really well.”
You can watch Michael’s post-match interview on iFollow Barnsley.