Barnsley were beaten 2-1 by Luton Town at Kenilworth Road in the Sky Bet Championship.
Despite an equaliser from Carlton Morris on the cusp of half-time, goals from Allan Campbell and Elijah Adebayo for the hosts were enough to defeat the Reds this evening.
Barnsley nearly made the perfect start to the game, after Domingos Quina found himself through on goal within the opening minute. Some nice interplay between Bassi and Styles on the right hand side allowed the Portuguese attacker to be found through on goal. Quina rounded the Hatters goalkeeper James Shea, but his floated cross into the box evaded the oncoming white shirts arriving in the area.
Despite Barnsley’s bright start to the affair, it was the hosts who opened the scoring after 28 minutes. An inswinging corner kick from former Barnsley academy graduate James Bree caused chaos in the Reds’ penalty area, and the ball was eventually bundled over the line by Campbell.
The game returned to its pattern prior to the goal, with both sides contesting for the ball in central areas and struggling to create chances of any real quality under the lights in Bedfordshire.
However the Reds got back level just before the break. Callum Styles broke on the right hand side on the counter, where Carlton Morris was waiting to pounce on a through ball in the centre of the pitch. Styles poked the ball through, and Morris leapt into action, striding into the area. Once inside the box, the forward chopped inside, leaving the Hatters defender for dead. Morris then coolly dinked the ball past the oncoming Shea to send the Reds into the break on an even keel.
HALF-TIME: Luton Town 1-1 Barnsley
Despite pegging back the hosts late on in the first half, the Reds found themselves behind again shortly after the restart.
A through ball forced Brad Collins to come out of his six yard box to deny substitute Fred Onyedinma. However, the Reds ‘keeper was alleged to have brought down the Hatters attacker and the referee, Andy Davies pointed to the spot.
After a couple of minutes of consultation with his assistant, Davies did eventually allow the spot-kick to be taken, which was despatched in the 59th minute by Luton’s top goalscorer, Adebayo.
Once again, little action ensued after the goal, with Poya Asbaghi turning to his bench to make a double sub just after the hour mark. Amine Bassi was replaced, after a bright hour at Kenilworth Road, by Devante Cole, along with a change on the flanks, as Remy Vita gave way for Jordan Williams.
The home side began to take the ascendancy in the game, having a flurry of half chances from dead ball situations midway through the second half. In a final roll of the dice for the Reds, Josh Benson was replaced by Romal Palmer in the 78th minute.
Neither side were able to create any sort of rhythm in the final ten minute, with the home side disrupting the flow of the game, as to be expected when leading in the match.
The Hatters did well to limit Barnsley’s chances in additional time, despite the Reds throwing bodies forward in attempt to rescue a point to take back to Oakwell. The man in the middle called time on the match and consigned Barnsley to another Sky Bet Championship defeat.
FULL-TIME: Luton Town 2-1 Barnsley
Reds XI: Collins, Styles, Helik, Andersen ©, Kitching, Vita (Williams), Gomes, Bassi (Cole), Benson (Palmer), Morris, Quina
Unused: Walton, Halme, Hondermarck, Leya Iseka