Barnsley 1-3 Bolton Wanderers

Last updated : 06 May 2024 By Rob Miles

Barnsley will have to do something they have never done before if they are to extend their 100% record in reaching League One Play-Off finals and recover a two goal deficit in the first leg following a chastening 3-1 home defeat to Bolton which continues their terrible end of season run.

In their sixth play-off campaign this was the fourth time they have lost the home leg but the first time ever it has been by two goals (previously 1-2, 0-1, 0-1)

They have won the first leg on only two occasions (away at Birmingham in 2000 and at home to Walsall in 2016) losing three and drawing one.

Barnsley are now winless in seven matches, (D2 L5), their worst run at this level since they infamously lost seven in a row in October/November 2015 and they have now won only one of the last ten.

They have now gone seven home games without winning (D4 L3), a run that started with a 2-2 draw against Bolton.

It is their worst home run since a run of eight between August and November 2019 (D4 L4)

It is their worst home run at this level since 1971 when after beating Walsall 4-2 on the opening day at Oakwell they failed to win any of their next 13 league games which included seven at home (D2 L5)

This was the 15th home league match Barnsley have failed to win this season, the most at this level since 2004-2005 (16)

For the second game in a row the Reds conceded an injury time goal, the fifth time they have conceded in injury time this season and second against Bolton.

Remarkably Randell Williams has scored in second half injury time in both Oakwell meetings with Barnsley this season.

It is the first time Barnsley have conceded 90+minute goals in successive league games since April 2013 against Charlton and Derby.

This is the sixth time (all comps) that Barnsley have conceded at least three times in a home game this season – the most in a season since 2019-2020 (also six)

Dion Charles grabbed a brace, the sixth opposition player to net twice against Barnsley in the league this season following Junior Quitrna – Fleetwood, James Collins – Derby, Jonson Clarke-Harris – Peterborough, Jack Moylan – Lincoln and Alfie May – Charlton

He has scored twice against Barnsley for Bolton in successive seasons.

There were 13,846 in attendance for the game, 2,428 less than in the Oakwell leg between these two teams in last season’s play-offs.

Aside from the Championship semi-final against Swansea in 2021 when COVID restrictions allowed only 4,000 supporters in this is comfortably Barnsley’s lowest play-off home leg attendance.

Martin Devaney has now had five matches as caretaker manager of Barnsley (also the last three games of 2021-2022) and he has failed to win any, losing four.

Bolton had four players yellow carded, the most by an opponent at Oakwell since Charlton in December, 14 Oakwell matches ago.

Barnsley have now won only one of their last 20 league meetings with Bolton (the play-off home semi-final last season) with this the eighth defeat in that run.

This was however their first defeat in five meetings with the Trotters (W1 D3)

The play-off victory last May is their only Oakwell success in the last ten (D4 L5)

Bolton have scored at least twice in four of their last five visits and five of the last seven with this the second time they have netted three in that run.

Barnsley have kept one clean sheet in the last 12 league Oakwell clashes.

Barnsley have managed only nine shots in both Oakwell meetings with Bolton this season.

Only once this season have they had less than the two shots on target they managed here in a home game and that was the zero they managed against Blackpool back in September.

Barnsley Team:

1. Liam Roberts

6. Mael de Gevigney

43. Josh Earl

2. Jordan Williams

22. Corey O’Keeffe

48. Luca Connell

8. Herbie Kane

30. Adam Phillips

7. Nicky Cadden

44. Devante Cole

45. John McAtee


11. Conor Grant (for Kane 66)

9. Sam Cosgrove (for Cole 66)

12. Fabio Jalo (for McAtee 88)

Unused Substitutes:

23. Ben Killip, 26. Jamie McCart, 17. Barry Cotter, 3. Jon Russell.


Bolton Team:

1. Nathan Baxter

18. Eoin Toal

5. Ricardo Santos

2. Gethin Jones

4. George Thomason

19. Paris Maghoma

12. Josh Dacres-Cogley

8. Josh Sheehan

27. Randell Williams

10. Dion Charles

28. Aaron Collins


22. Kyle Dempsey (for Maghoma 83)

14. Victor Adeboyejo (for Collins 87)

35. Cameron Jerome (for Charles 87)

Unused Substitutes:

13. Joel Coleman, 3. Jack Iredale, 17. Nathanael Ogbeta, 16. Aaron Morley.


SkyBet League One Play-Off Semi-Final First Leg Results:


BARNSLEY 1-3 Bolton Wanderers

                           Charles 23

                           Charles pen 53

Cosgrove 76

                            Williams 90+4



Oxford United 1–0 Peterborough United

Moore 53


Next Up:

On The Road:

Sky Bet Play-Off Semi-Final Second Leg: Bolton Wanderers v Barnsley, Tuesday 7th May 2024. Kick Off: 8pm

At Oakwell: