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23 January 2022

Speaking after our 2-1 defeat at Birmingham City on Saturday afternoon, Poya Asbaghi admits this loss was tough to take given how many chances his side created.

The Reds saw Callum Styles, Victor Adeboyejo and Carlton Morris all thwarted by Neil Etheridge before the interval, while opportunities came and went after the break – including Michał Helik’s audacious overhead kick that bounced agonisingly off the upright.

“The result is really disappointing,” began Asbaghi. “You can lose the game in different ways; you can lose it by not having so much to say in the game and come back after in the locker room and say ‘this game was not for us’. 

“Or you can lose the game in the way we lost where you feel almost extra disappointed because you feel like you have just as much to say in the game as Birmingham – maybe even more. In terms of creating chances, I believe we created even more than them.”

Goals in either half from Onel Hernández and Scott Hogan saw City take a two-goal lead, but Barnsley never stopped trying as they looked to salvage at least a point at St. Andrew’s.

Adeboyejo’s poachers finish three minutes from time gave us a glimmer of hope, but it was too little too late as we succumbed to a 15th defeat of the Sky Bet Championship campaign.

However, Asbaghi is encouraged by the number of chances that the Reds are creating and is hopeful that the elusive win will come sooner rather than later.

“The first half was pretty open – both teams were creating their fair amount and Birmingham were the ones leading, but we came into half-time feeling that we can definitely turn this game around,” discussed our Head Coach.

“Unfortunately, we started the second half by conceding from the corner, but after that the half was just about us – we were the ones creating chances. Stylesy had a good chance and Mich hit the post, then we scored the 2-1 goal.

“It feels really tough to lose this game when we have created more chances than in a lot of games combined, so of course, we have to make sure we don’t give away chances and concede, but we’re definitely going to take with us the chances that we created because we created in different ways. 

“That has to be our confidence when the wins are not coming.”

Up next for the Reds is a trip to the City Ground on Tuesday evening where Nottingham Forest await.

Steve Cooper’s side are in fine form, currently, but Asbaghi wants his players to use each game as an education to understand where they can improve in specific areas.

“We have to learn from the goals we conceded, definitely, but as well we have to gain confidence from the things we are doing well,” insisted the Swede.

“There have been games that we have lost where we haven’t done so many things good, but then it’s about understanding what we have to improve.

“This game, of course, is a learning process in knowing what we need to improve, but there are more things we are doing in terms of creating chances and we have to understand that, earn confidence from that, keep believing in that and keep repeating those things so we have a say going to Nottingham Forest.”

You can watch Poya’s post-match interview on iFollow Barnsley.

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