"Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich must be nervous" - Are Barnsley automatic promotion contenders? The verdict | OneFootball

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Football League World

·22 March 2023

"Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich must be nervous" - Are Barnsley automatic promotion contenders? The verdict

Article image:"Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich must be nervous" - Are Barnsley automatic promotion contenders? The verdict

Barnsley pulled off a brilliant victory in League One last night, defeating league leaders Sheffield Wednesday 4-2 at Oakwell.

Michael Duff's side were on top from the start, and thanks to goals from Devante Cole and James Norwood, took an early 2-0 lead in the match.

Sheffield Wednesday did go on to level things thanks to a brace from Lee Gregory, and with 15 minutes to go, the league leaders looked like they had the momentum to go on and win.

However, it was Barnsley who would do so, with Max Watters netting in the 83rd minute and Liam Kitching securing all three points in the 96th.

Barnsley remain fourth in League One following the win, but are now just eight points behind Plymouth Argyle in first, with two games in hand over them.

The gap to Sheffield Wednesday in second stands at six points meanwhile, whilst Duff's side are just three points behind Ipswich with a game in hand.

With all of the above in mind, we asked three of our FLW writers if the leading League One trio - Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich - should be worried about Barnsley's recent surge.

Simmey Hannifin-Donaldson

That was a real statement win from Barnsley against Sheffield Wednesday last night.

Indeed, Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich must be nervous and looking over their shoulders.

Barnsley have now picked up 32 points from their last 36 available in League One which is incredible form to be finding at a crucial stage of the season.

Michael Duff's side have certainly given themselves a chance to compete for automatic promotion and made what looked like a three-horse race a four-horse one.

Indeed, I do believe those leading the charge at the top of the table should be very worried about Barnsley.

Alfie Burns

There’s every need to give Barnsley the respect they deserve.

Only Burnley are on a longer unbeaten run in the EFL right now and Barnsley are right in the thick of the promotion race.

The way they responded to Sheffield Wednesday drawing level last night was superb and the scenes at full-time told you that the club has momentum in its corner.

That’s a wonderful thing to lean on at this time of year and it could take Barnsley that step further.

Right now, I’m not fully of the mind that they’ll pinch second, but they’ve got a chance. Write them off at your peril.

Marcus Ally

Barnsley have a pretty favourable run-in aside from hosting Ipswich Town and playing teams who will be battling relegation.

However, even if they win all ten of their remaining fixtures the league title is probably out of reach at this point.

I thought it was more a case of Wednesday shooting themselves in the foot at Oakwell on Tuesday than the Tykes being irresistible, but you make your own luck with the intensity that they play with.

Ipswich do not have the easiest of run-ins but they are probably already in a mental state where they know they may have to go up via the play-offs.

If I am Darren Moore I am not too concerned and Plymouth Argyle have a very manageable run-in as well.

Six points is a lot of ground to make up in ten games and they may have to win all of them to have a chance.

It is very rare that teams finish the season on a 14-match win streak so as things stand, I am very wary in the Ipswich camp, but for the top two their fate is still very much in their own hands.

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