Date: 18th December 2015 at 9:13pm
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Manager Lee Johnson and goalkeeper Adam Davies have both given their thoughts ahead of this weekend’s game against Wigan Athletic.

Beginning with the gaffer in his pre game press conference, Johnson explained to the Official Site that he was looking for a repeat performance having taken the penalty victory over them a fortnight ago in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy match, but he knows they will again be a difficult side to face.

‘Wigan have such a strong squad because they have that ability to change the squad like-for-like and still give them that dynamic. It`ll be another tough test, tougher than they JPT game but we`re looking forward to it.’

Question marks remain over Ryan Williams and his availability over the festive run of fixtures, especially with the Australian Under 23 tournament on the horizon, but outside of him, Johnson has no fresh injury concerns following the recent game.

‘The only real issue was Marc Roberts but he`s come through with only bone bruising and everybody else is fine. Ryan is chomping at the bit and knocking on the door saying he wants to start. We`ll have to make sure that when we do start him, there`s a place for him to keep the shirt because there`s decent competition for places. We`re looking into that (internationals) and we`ve left it with the powers that be to see what the laws are and the rules to make sure that we keep him here. We don`t want to be without a player for seven months due to injuries and international calls, particularly a player we went so hard for in the summer.’

With the January window almost upon us now, the gaffer also confirmed that wheels were in motion to strengthen the group with a few new faces – and to tie up extensions on loan players we want to keep.

‘We`re looking to extend Kevin Long`s loan. We`ve had talks with Burnley and they`re happy to extend it but they will require an immediate recall. Things change all the time and the difficulty is we`re also looking for JPT availability which could limit the market. In some areas, recruitment is a must and in some we can get away without it but it`s an important factor in who we`re looking to bring in. We could potentially be depleted if everybody was recalled and we were unable to extend their loans. We want to deliver a trip to Wembley and we`re only going to do that with the best possible team out.’

As for Davies, in his own interview he said that with recent performances and the three two victory over Colchester in midweek, he feels Barnsley have now turned a corner again or are at least beginning to turn it.

‘I think we`re in a good place at the minute, we`ve been playing well even before the last few results, we just weren`t getting them our way. I can feel that we are getting better and hopefully we can go on a little run and this is the start of it. I knew it would turn our way in the end, it`s good that the results have come our way and we just need to keep at it.’

As for Colchester, he added.

‘I was hoping for a 3-0 finish to be fair! We let two sloppy goals in so we know we still need to work on that. There`s a really good buzz around the place and we`re looking forward to Saturday. We stuck in there and showed group has good resilience. But we can`t go 3-0 up and let them back into it when we were cruising but we`ll work on it. It`s hard to keep your head up and this is the toughest test I`ve had as a goalkeeper. I feel like I`m coming through it. You have to concentrate on what`s happening and not worry about what`s happened before and keep on looking forward. We`ve added players with experience and have given the group organisation. We`ve been playing 4-4-2, the team hasn`t changed too much and we`ve gelled and feel more settled.’

Having saved the penalty that beat Wigan last time we faced them, Davies said everyone would go into the game with great confidence from that match.

‘I`m looking forward to it because we know we can beat them. Even though we beat them on penalties, we had more shots. We have the ability to win, we just have to set up the same and do the same as we did last time. I think we`ll be looking forward then because we`ll be out of the relegation zone and we have the area final of the JPT and we`ll be in a good place.’

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