Date: 20th February 2014 at 10:45am
Written by:

The reaction of most Barnsley fans on social media and forums to a 2 – 0 defeat at Wigan was baffling to say the least. Losing away at Wigan won`t be the deciding in relegating us. Surely anything other than a defeat at Wigan can only be seen as a bonus. You would think we had just lost at home to Yeovil with the way the doom and gloom merchants were going on.

At times I don`t know what Barnsley fans expect. Yes it is always disappointing to lose and it is disappointing when you perform poorly but how many can honestly say we should be going to Wigan expecting to gain a point or better?

I do believe the task to stay up this season is greater than what it was last season and I honestly can`t see us staying up.

However games such as the Wigan game can only be seen as a bonus if any points are secured. If we are to have any hope of staying up then the games we must win are the likes of the one on Saturday when we play Millwall at home.

Anything less than a victory in that fixture and we are almost certainly down. Yes there are still plenty of points to play for but if you look at our fixture list then the winnable games are few and far between.

Not beating Millwall isn`t solely what will send us down. The poor start to the season is a big contributing factor as well as late points dropped in games such as the one at Sheffield Wednesday and at home to Ipswich. Too many draws that maybe should have been wins and ultimately the fact that the writing has been on the wall for a number of years now.

I wasn`t shocked by the reaction of some fans following the Wigan fixture. Many fans saw it as a game in hand and as such one in which we needed to come away from with at least point.

Although I wasn`t shocked I did find the reaction baffling but this is how modern day football is.

Many fans turned on manager Danny Wilson immediately following the Wigan game. Many claiming he was out of his depth and some even claiming he should be sacked if he takes us down.

My answer to those fans is that he needs time to turn things round. We were in a mess when he arrived and too many fans expected him to work miracles.

If we do go down which we probably will then he is the right man to have us challenging at the top end of League One.

No manager is perfect and I do agree with many fans that he has made some mistakes since his arrival but every single manager does and yes we fans are more qualified to pick the team than Danny Wilson if you were to believe the forums and social media.

Wilson has certainly made us harder to beat, more resilient, better defensively and more competitive that is for sure. There have been too many draws that should have been wins and too many defeats that should have been draws but hopefully we will begin to put that right.

Mellis will return to the team against Millwall and that is a big bonus as we have certainly missed him in midfield. Hopefully he can fill the void and help us turn those draws in to victories starting on Saturday.

I like many fans don`t agree with every team selection that Wilson makes but you probably would have a different opinion from every single fan in the ground. The fact that most fans want McCourt or Cywka starting does not mean Wilson is a bad manager.

He had a short period in January in which to try and build a team. Did we really expect to survive just because Wilson was appointed and the board gave him a bit of backing in the January transfer window? I am a bit more realistic than that but you can`t blame the fans for being passionate and wanting the club to stay up but surely there is a more constructive way than wanting the manager out and slagging players off.

As I mentioned earlier, Wilson has certainly improved us defensively and we now have two lads who can find the back of the net. For me the midfield area is still the problem despite it being where we have by far the most options. It is just about finding the right combination of players and system for them to play in.

I don`t think Wilson knows his best team yet. Yes that probably is a problem but he will still be learning about many of the players and most perform inconsistently at best.

Many have begun to criticise the signings of Brek Shea and Liam Lawrence and I must say that I do agree with the criticisms labelled at those two signings. However we have seen very little of them and they may just need more time to settle or get fit.

The selection of McLaughlin came in for some criticism at Wigan. McLaughlin clearly wasn`t fit but as Wilson said, in an ideal world he wouldn`t have had to play but this isn`t an ideal world. Hunt was injured so he really did have no option. Many of the fans criticising the decision were selecting him in ‘their team` to play Wigan only the day before.

Ultimately I feel that the manager of a football can never win with the fans. Even if you were winning the league on a regular basis every dropped point would come under scrutiny such is the modern game.

I urge fans to get behind Wilson and more importantly to get behind the team and fill Oakwell for the visit of Millwall. It is the biggest game of our season and could ultimately determine which division we are playing in next season.