Barnsley boss Neill Collins feels players answered critics with win at Carlisle

By Sports Desk March 12, 2024

Barnsley boss Neill Collins praised his side’s reaction from their weekend mauling as they came from a goal down to beat Carlisle 3-2.

Question marks were raised about the Tykes’ promotion credentials after they were hammered 5-1 by Lincoln on Saturday.

But, despite falling behind to Luke Armstrong’s early goal, they equalled a club record of 10 successive away games unbeaten in the same season.

Goals from captain Jordan Williams, John McAtee and Jonathan Russell put them in command and they held on for all three points after Daniel Butterworth pulled one back for League One’s bottom club Carlisle.

And Collins said: “That’s a huge win and in some respects our biggest win of the season.

“We are on a great run, but despite all of the positives, one performance gets questions asked and I thought the players answered them well.

“It’s fantastic to get a big record like that at a club like Barnsley who have had a lot of good teams over the years.

“One mistake and it was a goal and in the back of the net, but after that we were really good.

“We could have been ahead at half-time but we came out and continued and really could have had more.

“There was another mistake at the end and that made it a bit more interesting than I would have liked.”

Williams produced a fine 20-yard strike to level in the 33rd minute.

Collins added: “It was fantastic. Jordan has been an excellent captain and got a great goal. For large parts his performance was excellent.”

Paul Simpson’s Carlisle have lost 11 of their last 12 as relegation straight back to League Two creeps ever closer.

They are now 16 points adrift of safety and Simpson said: “You have to be brutally honest, they were the better team.

“When you look at the levels, you’ve got a team who have been in the Championship and fighting for promotion and we’re where we are because that’s where we deserve to be.

“That’s clear to see in terms of the technical ability of them and the care they took on the passing.

“We had opportunities where we got into the final third, but we don’t take enough care on it.

“The disappointing thing is we work day in and day out on passing and possession drills. We get in good areas, but can’t do it.

“I’ve said to the players that it’s an education. We’re seeing and we’re suffering because we’re coming up against teams who are physically stronger and that’s not a case of just working on it in the gym, they’re psychologically made up better than us.

“That’s something we’ve got to change because we’re aspiring to be like that as a football club.

“We want to improve and be able to compete at this level, but currently we’re a long way off it.”

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