Barnsley 7-0 Port Vale

Last updated : 07 August 2023 By Rob Miles

Barnsley started 2023-2024 off in stunning style as they recorded the biggest opening day victory by an EFL side for 62 years with this SEVEN nil triumph over Port Vale the biggest since Wolves defeated Manchester City 8-1 on the opening day of 1962-1963.

It is Barnsley’s biggest ever opening day success and their first seven goal haul for 26 years since defeating Huddersfield 7-1 in November 1998.

This is Barnsley’s biggest victory for 72 years since defeating QPR 7-0 in November 1950.

On that day Tommy Taylor netted a hat-trick for the Reds and this weekend Devante Cole took the matchball home for the first time in his career.

It is Barnsley’s first hattrick since Conor Chaplin netted a treble in a 5-3 success against QPR in December 2019 whilst it is the first opening day hattrick by a Red since Brian Joicey in a 4-2 win over Halifax in 1978.

Barnsley only led 2-0 at half time against Port Vale, but it is the first time they have led by two goals at the break on the opening day of a season since 2018-2019 when they went on to defeat Oxford 4-0 (and finished second to win promotion from League One)

This game was also the last time a Barnsley player has scored more than once on the opening day (Mamadou Thiam netted a brace against the O’s)

Liam Kitching scored Barnsley’s fifth goal, his sixth goal for the club, three of which have come against Port Vale! He has now netted in all three appearances against the Valiants.

Barnsley are unbeaten in all six games in which Kitching has scored (W4 D2)

The Reds also benefitted from an own goal, the first time this has occurred since the 1st April, in another big scoreline, a 5-0 victory over Morecambe.

Indeed Barnsley have now scored more league goals than any other EFL side in 2023. They have netted 59 so far, two more than the next best Ipswich.

Goalkeeper Liam Roberts kept a clean sheet on his debut but also received a yellow card, the first Barnsley keeper booking since Brad Collins at Oxford on the 1st February.

It is the first time a Barnsley keeper has both been booked and kept a clean sheet since Collins at Shrewsbury in November 2022.

There were six Barnsley players booked, ironically the most in a game since the opening home league game of 2021-2022 when eight were yellow carded against Coventry.

Barry Cotter is the first Barnsley player to set up two goals in a game since Adam Phillips the aforementioned Oxford game in February.

Callum Styles made his first competitive Barnsley appearance since the 27th August last year when he scored at Ipswich.

Barnsley are now unbeaten in 32 league matches when opening the scoring (W28 D4) last losing from a 1-0 lead in the final home game of 2021-2022 against Preston (1-3)


This was Barnsley’s biggest ever victory against Port Vale, surpassing a 6-0 victory in March 1929 and they have now won back to back games against the Valiants for the first time since 1996/1997 – the Reds had lost 10 of the 19 meetings in between.


Barnsley Team:

1. Liam Roberts

22. Corey O'Keeffe

2. Jordan Williams

5 Liam Kitching

4. Kacper Lopata

7. Nicky Cadden

8. Herbie Kane

20. Callum Styles

3. Jon Russell

36. Max Watters

44. Devante Cole


17. Barry Cotter (for O’Keeffe 33)

14. Oli Shaw (for Watters 61)

38. Theo Chapman (for Russell 75)

16. Andy Dallas (for Cole 75)

41. Jack Shepherd (Y) (for Kitching 75)

Unused Substitutes:

23. Ben Killip, 43. Charlie Winfield.


Port Vale Team:

1. Connor Ripley

2. Lewis Cass

6. Nathan Smith

3. Dan Jones

14. Funso Ojo

7. Mitchell Clark

8. Ben Garrity

4. Tom Sang

15. Conor Grant

19. Gavin Massey

9. Ellis Harrison


10. Ethan Chislett (for Clark 45)

44. Josh Thomas (for Massey 56)

21. James Plant (for Sang 64)

18. Ollie Arblaster (for Grant 71)

17. Alex Iacovitti (for Harrison 71)

Unused Substitutes:

13. Jayson Leutwiler, 29. James Wilson


Match Reports:

Official Website



Sky Bet League One Results:


BARNSLEY (1st) 7-0 Port Vale (23rd)

Cole 23

Jones og 45

Cole 47

Kitching 60

Russell 64

Dallas 90+6

Blackpool (4th) 2-0 Burton Albion (19th)

Lavery 19

Lavery 25

Bolton Wanderers (3rd) 3-0 Lincoln City (21st)

Iredale 4

Adeboyejo 59

O’Connor og 74

Cambridge United (5th) 2-0 Oxford United (20th)

Lankester 15

Ahadme 28

Carlisle United (12th) 1-1 Fleetwood Town (11th)

Moxon 36

                                         Sarpong-Wiredu 45+4

Charlton Athletic (8th) 1-0 Leyton Orient (16th)

Dobson 45

Derby County (14th) 1-2 Wigan Athletic (24th)

                                        Wyke 37

Forsyth 57

                                        Wyke 72

Northampton Town (17th) 0-1 Stevenage (7th)

                                                  Piergianni 80

Portsmouth (13th) 1-1 Bristol Rovers (10th)

                                    Thomas 24

Yengi 90+2

Reading (18th) 0-1 Peterborough United (6th)

                              Mason-Clark 43

Shrewsbury Town (9th) 1-0 Cheltenham Town (15th)

Bowman 50

Wycombe Wanderers (22nd) 0-3 Exeter City (2nd)

                                                    Aitchison 1

                                                    Aimson 4

                                                    Scott 83


Barnsley lie in 1st place in Sky Bet League One with 3 points from 1 game. We are Goal Difference inside the Play-Offs, Goal Difference inside the Automatic Promotion Places, in First Place and 3 points above the Relegation Zone.

Up to 7/8/23


Next Up:

At Oakwell:

EFL Cup First Round: Barnsley v Tranmere Rovers, Tuesday 8th August 2023. Kick Off: 7:45pm

On The Road:

Sky Bet League One Matchday Two: Bristol Rovers v Barnsley, Saturday 12th August 2023. Kick Off: 3pm