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Match Reports

REDS CLAIM HARD-FOUGHT POINT IN STOKE BATTLE

15 September 2021

Barnsley took a share of the points after a 1-1 draw with Stoke City tonight.

Some outstanding goalkeeping from Brad Collins and a spectacular Cauley Woodrow free-kick saw the Reds pick up a well-earned point on their trip to the bet365 Stadium.

Stoke had been in top form, losing just one of their first six matches of the new season, that loss coming to fellow play-off sitters Fulham just before the international break, and despite Barnsley looking the most likely to go ahead here in the early stages, it was the hosts who opened the scoring.

Shortly after a powerful Woodrow shot had tested Joe Bursik in the Potters goal, O'Neill's men went up the other end and with their first real attack, took an early lead.

It came just after the quarter-hour mark when a Tommy Smith low cross across the box wasn't cleared by the Reds backline and summer signing Sam Surridge calmly slotted it home from six yards.

Barnsley needed a bit of magic and seven minutes before half-time, Woodrow was that magician with a wondrous free-kick from all of 25 yards, leaving the Stoke keeper grasping at thin air as the ball curled into the top left corner.

In additional time at the end of the opening 45, Surridge found himself one-on-one with Collins inside the box, but fell to the ground under no contact from the out-rushing 'keeper. The referee, Leigh Doughty decided there had been a foul and pointed to the spot, booking Brad in the aftermath as well as the protesting Michał Helik.

Our goalkeeper shut out the noise, and with the last action of the half, he tipped Mario Vrancic’s penalty onto the bar as the Bosnian international tried to hit it straight down the middle. Justice had been done.

HALF-TIME: Stoke City 1-1 Reds

The Reds clearly had the better team talk as they were fast out of the gates in the second half with bright football, as substitutes Victor Adeboyejo and Claudio Gomes entered the fray.

But Stoke continued to be a nuisance in the final third with two quick corners, one leading to a Vrancic cross finding Surridge unmarked at the back post, but a great save kept the scores level.

Another incredible save from Collins came soon after with a reaction stop to deny Vrancic from getting on the scoresheet with a free header. 

There were nearly moments for the Reds at the other end, as Woodrow saw a deflected free-kick turned behind by Bursik, Brittain fired wide from the edge of the box before he sent in a delightful cross that somehow Adeboyejo bundled wide from a yard out.

But it was Collins again to the rescue, pulling off another out-of-this-world save to deny Surridge from three yards out.

Stoke had to see the game out with ten men when Tommy Smith was shown red with six minutes remaining after a heavy tackle on Gomes, before emotions got the better of staff and players alike in the Barnsley technical area with referee Doughty sending off two of Stoke's coaching staff and the Reds' assistant coach Jo Laumann. 

Nevertheless, a battling performance saw the Reds head back to Oakwell with a valuable point.

FULL-TIME: Stoke City 1-1 Reds

Collins, Sibbick (Hondermarck), Halme, Helik, Moon, Styles, Brittain, Palmer (Gomes), Leya Iseka (Adeboyejo), Woodrow, Frieser.

Unused: Walton, Sraha, Cole.


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