Optimism continues to grow around Oakwell as Barnsley made it FIVE successive second tier wins for the first time in 25 years.
The last time they achieved such a feat was when they won the opening five league matches of 1996-1997 – and went on to secure promotion to the Premier League.
In any division it is Barnsley’s best winning run since winning seven in a row in League One between December 2015 and January 2016 – another season they went on to win promotion.
Cauley Woodrow opened the scoring after just two minutes, Barnsley’s earliest goal since Michal Helik netted after two minutes against Bristol City in October.
Ironically in both games Helik and Woodrow have scored and Leigh Doughty has been the referee.
Following on from Styles’ ninth minute opener against Stoke in midweek it is the first time they have scored in the opening ten minutes of matches in successive games since January 2016 when Alfie Mawson scored after eight minutes against Rochdale and then Marley Watkins netted after two minutes at Swindon.
Following Woodrow’s opener Millwall were not behind for long, levelling through Mason Bennett after just six minutes, the earliest goal Barnsley have conceded since Jamal Lowe netted after two minutes for Swansea on the 19th December 2020.
Indeed it the first goal conceded by Barnsley before half time in nine matches (all comps) since Troy Deeney scored a 27th minute penalty for Watford on the 19th January.
It is the first time both teams have scored in the first ten minutes of a Barnsley match since the 14th October 2017 when Barnsley were leading Middlesbrough 2-1 after nine minutes. (goals scored after 2, 7 and 9)
In 38 games in 2020-2021 (all comps) it is only the 14th time both teams have netted and only the third in the last 13 outings.
A Barnsley game was level at halftime by a score-line other than 0-0 for the first time since Boxing Day (1-1 v Huddersfield)
This game was Millwall’s first defeat in 10 league outings (W3 D6) and the first time they have conceded at least twice in a league game since their last Championship defeat – 3-1 at Nottingham Forest on the 16th January.
This was the 26th league match this season in which Barnsley have either scored two goals or none at all (from 32 played), the 15th of which they have scored twice.
They have either scored twice or none at all in 17 of their last 18 league matches with the one exception being the 1-0 win at Bristol City.
Barnsley have now won eight of the last nine matches in which Woodrow has scored (D1) and have lost only one of the last 15.
This was the fourth game in which Helik has scored and Barnsley remain unbeaten when he has (W3 D1)
Barnsley won 5/5 in February, their first 100% month when they have played more than one match since January 2016 – also 5/5.
Mads Andersen set up both Barnsley goals in the game, the first player to assist two goals in a match since Luke Thomas at Middlesbrough in the League Cup in September and the first in a league game since Jacob Brown v Huddersfield in January 2020.
Andersen is the first Reds defender to assist two goals in a game since Dani Pinillos at Rochdale in August 2018.
This result saw Barnsley break the 50 point mark and now have two points more than they managed in 2019-2020 overall.
It is the earliest they have hit the 50 point mark in a second tier season (32 games) since 2000 when they reached 50 points after 27 games.
Barnsley made as many as two half time substitutions for the first time in a league match this season, and the second time overall (also v Nottingham Forest in the League Cup)
Barnsley have now won three successive home league games for the third time this season.
Barnsley are now unbeaten run in seven league matches which is their best unbeaten Championship run since a run of seven between August and October 2011 (W2 D5)
This was Barnsley’s ninth home league win of the season, their most at this level since 2012-2013 (9)
Barnsley are now unbeaten in their last 31 games (all comps) when opening the scoring (W27 D4) last losing when breaking the deadlock at Cardiff in December 2019.
They have won each of the last 12 Championship games in which they have opened the scoring.
Despite failing to win any of their first seven league matches of 2020-2021 only the division’s current top five have won more than Barnsley’s 15 so far this season.
Barnsley are now unbeaten in each of their last four meetings with Millwall (W2 D2) and have lost only two of the last 11 (W7 D2 L2)
40. Brad Collins
26. Michael Sollbauer
30. Michal Helik
6. Mads Andersen
7. Callum Brittain
21. Romal Palmer
27. Alex Mowatt
4. Callum Styles
9. Cauley Woodrow
10. Daryl Dike
14. Carlton Morris
24. Aapo Halme (for Palmer 45)
20. Toby Sibbick (for Sollbauer 45)
29. Victor Adeboyejo (for Dike 75)
2. Jordan Williams (for Styles 81)
28. Dominik Frieser (for Woodrow 90+1)
1. Jack Walton, 8. Herbie Kane, 11. Conor Chaplin, 22. Clarke Oduor.
33. Bartosz Bialkowski
4. Shaun Hutchinson
15. Alex Pearce
28. George Evans
12. Mahlon Romeo
19. Ryan Woods
8. Ben Thompson
14. Scott Malone
7. Jed Wallace
20. Mason Bennett
6. Shaun Williams
10. Matt Smith (for Thompson 75)
11. Shane Ferguson (for Williams 85)
22. Jon Dadi Bödvarsson (for Pearce 85)
32. Tyler Burey (for Bennett 85)
9. Tom Bradshaw (for J. Wallace 90+2)
1. Frank Fielding, 23. Dan McNamara, 24. Billy Mitchell, 27. Junior Tiensia.
Millwall manager Gary Rowett said:
"I thought it was a very close game. I thought we were the better side in the first half and they were probably the better side in the second half.
"The first goal is offside. I'm not going to massively complain about it but it's a clear offside and I think the linesman should certainly be able to see that.
"They are really direct. They're probably the most direct side that I've seen in the Championship. They're good at it. It's the Championship and you don't always get what you deserve. We didn't play with enough quality and we didn't defend set-pieces."
Sky Bet Championship results
FRIDAY 26TH FEBRUARY 2021
Derby County (18th) 1-1 Nottingham Forest (16th)
SATURDAY 27TH FEBRUARY 2021
AFC Bournemouth (6th) 1-0 Watford (3rd)
BARNSLEY (7th) 2-1 Millwall (12th)
Birmingham City (21st) 2-1 Queens Park Rangers (17th)
Blackburn Rovers (15th) 1-1 Coventry City (20th)
Brentford (2nd) 2-1 Stoke City (10th)
Luton Town (14th) 3-2 Sheffield Wednesday (23rd)
Middlesbrough (9th) 1-1 Cardiff City (8th)
Preston North End (13th) 3-0 Huddersfield Town (19th)
Rotherham United (22nd) 0-1 Reading (5th)
Swansea City (4th) 1-3 Bristol City (11th)
Ayew pen 55
SUNDAY 28TH FEBRUARY 2021
Wycombe Wanderers (24th) 0-2 Norwich City (1st)
Barnsley lie in 7th place in the Sky Bet Championship with 51 points from 32 games. We are 1 point off the Play-Offs, 12 points off the Automatic Promotion Places, 19 points off First Place and 21 points above the Relegation Zone.
Up to 28/2/21
On The Road:
Sky Bet Championship Matchday Thirty Three: Queens Park Rangers v Barnsley, Wednesday 3rd March 2021. Kick-Off: 7pm
Sky Bet Championship Matchday Thirty Four: Barnsley v Birmingham City, Saturday 6th March 2021. Kick-Off: 3pm