Barnsley exorcised yet another away day ghost as they won at Bristol City for the first time in 28 years to move to within four points of the Championship play-offs.
Just as when breaking an eight game 11 year curse at Derby in November 2020, a seven game 11 year curse at Sheffield Wednesday in December 2020 and a 26 game 70 year curse at QPR in July 2020 the Reds ended a run of 17 games (five draws and 12 defeats) since a 2-0 win at Ashton Gate in October 1993.
Home or away this was Barnsley’s first victory against the Robins in 11 meetings (D6 L4) since a 1-0 Championship home win in September 2012. It was only the third win in 21 clashes stretching back to 2007.
Barnsley had conceded in 13 successive visits to Ashton Gate prior to yesterday since a 0-0 draw in 2005, conceding a total of 32 goals. They had conceded five on two occasions and three on five occasions.
The crucial goal came from inform January signing Carlton Morris who netted for the third successive match – the first Barnsley player to score in three matches in a row since Cauley Woodrow in January/February 2020 v Portsmouth (FA Cup), Charlton and Sheffield Wednesday and the first in three successive league games since Kieffer Moore in January 2019 who scored in four successive League One matches against Bradford, Wimbledon, Rochdale and Oxford.
Morris’ goal secured a third successive Championship victory, the second time they have achieved this feat in 2020-2021, it is the first time they have had two runs of three successive wins at this level since 2000-2001.
Morris has scored in back to back games as a substitute, it is the first time a Barnsley goal has been scored by a substitute in successive games since the final two games of 2019-2020 (Schmidt v Nottingham Forest and Oduor at Brentford)
Barnsley have won back to back Championship away games for the second time this season – the first time they have done it twice in a second tier season since 2016-2017.
They have won back to back Championship away games with clean sheets for the first time in 12 months – doing so at Fulham (3-0) and Hull (1-0) in February 2020.
Barnsley have kept three successive away league clean sheets (Nottingham Forest 0-0, Brentford 2-0, Bristol City 1-0) for the first time at this level since October-December 2016 v Brentford 2-0, Burton 0-0 and Birmingham 3-0
This is shaping up to be the Reds best Championship season since 2016-2017 when they finished in 14th position – this highest league finish for 17 years since fourth in 2000. They have an identical record after 30 games to that campaign four season ago – W13 D6 L11 – they were one place higher four years ago whilst they had scored considerably more (48-34) but also conceded considerably more (44-35)
Barnsley are now unbeaten in five Championship outings (W3 D2) their second such run of 2020-2021, and the first time they have managed to put two runs of five second tier games unbeaten since 2001-2002 when they had one big run of 12 without defeat between 2nd December 2001 and 9th February 2002 (W5 D7)
The Reds three successive wins have all come against teams like themselves whose name begins with the letter B (Brentford, Blackburn, Bristol City) whilst also winning at Birmingham in December. It is the first time they have beaten four fellow Bs in a season since 2018-2019 when they had six B wins (Bradford x3, Bristol Rovers, Blackpool x2)
This defeat was Bristol City’s sixth successive Championship defeat (five without scoring) their longest losing league run since December 2016- January 2017 (eight)
This was the 14th Barnsley match to be goal-less this season at half time (all comps), and they have gone on to win four of the last six.
They have had back to back half time 0-0s for the first time since November.
Valérien Ismaël made a triple change for the third game in a row.
Brad Collins received a booking for time wasting, the first Barnsley goalkeeper to be booked since Jack Walton at Swansea in December. It is third yellow card as a Barnsley goalkeeper.
Collins has now made seven successive starts for Barnsley, his best run since starting the final seven matches before the first lockdown last season.
He has kept six clean sheets in the 11 games he has played in 2020-2021.
This was the first Barnsley league game in 16 in which they had not either scored twice or not at all with this the first time they have scored one goal in a game since a 2-1 defeat at Blackburn in November and only their second league 1-0 victory this season (also v Watford in October)
Barnsley are now unbeaten in their last 29 games (all comps) when opening the scoring (W25 D4) last losing when breaking the deadlock at Cardiff in December 2019.
In all competitions Bristol City are the third side in the last five matches who Barnsley have restricted to just one shot on target.
Bristol City are the first opponents to fail to win a corner against Barnsley since Scunthorpe in August 2018.
40. Brad Collins
26. Michael Sollbauer
30. Michal Helik
6. Mads Andersen
7. Callum Brittain
21. Romal Palmer
27. Alex Mowatt
4. Callum Styles
10. Daryl Dike
9. Cauley Woodrow
11. Conor Chaplin
2. Jordan Williams (for Styles 57)
29. Victor Adeboyejo (for Woodrow 57)
14. Carlton Morris (for Chaplin 57)
20. Toby Sibbick (for Sollbauer 75)
28. Dominik Frieser (for Dike 82)
1. Jack Walton, 8. Herbie Kane, 22. Clarke Oduor, 24. Aapo Halme.
Bristol City Team:
1. Daniel Bentley
19. Adrian Mariappa
22. Tomas Kalas
23. Taylor Moore
43. Steven Sessegnon
26. Zak Vyner
45. Kasey Palmer
17. Henri Lansbury
2. Jack Hunt
9. Famara Diédhiou
30. Tyreeq Bakinson (for Lansbury 58)
10. Jamie Paterson (for Vyner 69)
21. Nahki Wells (for Semenyo 69)
4. Adam Nagy (for Sessegnon 76)
12. Max O'Leary, 28. Sam Pearson, 33. Sam Bell, 34. Ryley Towler, 42. Han-Noah Massengo.
Bristol City caretaker manager Paul Simpson said:
"I don't think we can fault the effort and commitment from the players, but please don't take that as a pat on the back for them, because that's the base we should expect.
"Our commitment's there, but our quality's just been really poor. We let ourselves down on the ball and we're talking about a group of footballers who are better than they're showing at the moment.
"There isn't a magic formula or a drug you can give them. The players have got to dig deep. They have definitely lost confidence and belief.
"When you've got things going against you, you sometimes try too hard to be too precise with your passes. You've got to be a bit smarter and calmer about it. We haven't tested them enough."
Sky Bet Championship results
FRIDAY 19TH FEBRUARY 2021
Watford (3rd) 2-1 Derby County (19th)
Joao Pedro 19
Troost-Ekong og 77
SATURDAY 20TH FEBRUARY 2021
Coventry City (20th) 2-0 Brentford (2nd)
Walker pen 19
Bristol City (15th) 0-1 BARNSLEY (10th)
Cardiff City (7th) 4-0 Preston North End (14th)
Moore pen 2
Huddersfield Town (18th) 4-1 Swansea City (4th)
Millwall (11th) 0-0 Wycombe Wanderers (24th)
Norwich City (1st) 1-0 Rotherham United (22nd)
Nottingham Forest (17th) 1-0 Blackburn Rovers (12th)
Queens Park Rangers (13th) 2-1 AFC Bournemouth (6th)
Reading (5th) 0-2 Middlesbrough (8th)
Sheffield Wednesday (23rd) 0-1 Birmingham City (21st)
Stoke City (9th) 3-0 Luton Town (16th)
Barnsley lie in 10th place in the Sky Bet Championship with 45 points from 30 games. We are 4 points off the Play-Offs, 12 points off the Automatic Promotion Places, 19 points off First Place and 16 points above the Relegation Zone.
Up to 21/2/21
Sky Bet Championship Matchday Thirty One: Barnsley v Stoke City, Wednesday 24th February 2021. Kick-Off: 7pm
On The Road:
Sky Bet Championship Matchday Thirty Three: Queens Park Rangers v Barnsley, Wednesday 3rd March 2021. Kick-Off: 7pm