Meet the opposition | Barnsley

16th October 2019
First team

As Swansea City prepare to take on Barnsley at Oakwell, we take a closer look at the men from South Yorkshire.

What’s their story?


Barnsley gained automatic promotion back to the Championship at the end of last season as runners-up in League One.

This marked an immediate return to the second tier after they had been relegated the prior season, despite the goals of former Swansea striker Oli McBurnie.

In recent years, the Tykes have bounced between the Championship and League One a number of times, and won the Football League Trophy at Wembley in 2016.

Formed in 1887, Barnsley’s solitary season in the top-flight came during the 1997-98 campaign. They were FA Cup winners in 1912.

How’s their form?

Alex Mowatt

Not what they would have hoped for. The Tykes have taken just six points from a possible 33 so far this season and are languishing in 23rd place in the Championship.

They are currently on a run of 11 matches without victory, having failed to win a match since a 1-0 victory over Fulham on the opening day of the season.

The Tykes go into the game off the back of a 5-1 defeat away to Preston North End before the international break.

Who’s the boss?

Daniel Stendel

Adam Murray became caretaker manager of the Tykes following the dismissal of boss Daniel Stendel (above) earlier this month.

Murray is a former midfielder who played for the likes of Derby County, Oxford United and Mansfield Town throughout his playing career. Following his retirement as a player, Murray also managed both Mansfield Town and Boston United.

The 38-year-old joined Barnsley in 2018 where he became the club’s under-18 head coach before stepping in as caretaker.

Who are the key men?

Caulay Woodrow

The Tykes signed forward Cauley Woodrow from then Premier League outfit Fulham in the summer of 2018.

Despite his young age, Woodrow has played over 100 games in the top flight and the Championship.

Woodrow scored 19 goals last season which proved key as the Reds secured automatic promotion back to the Championship, and he has three to his name so far this season.

Barnsley also snapped up Mallik Wilks as they looked to bolster their strike force. The talented forward is a product of the Leeds United academy, with his breakthrough season coming in the 2018-19 season whilst on loan with Doncaster Rovers.

Midfielder Alex Mowatt has made nine appearances for Barnsley so far this season and has been a key figure in recent seasons. With some great goals to his name and some battling play in midfield, Mowatt was named in the EFL and PFA Teams of the Year at the end of last season and was also named Players’ Player of the Year.

Another one to watch is Conor Chaplin, a diminutive forward who became the Tykes’ 10th signing of the summer. He made the switch from Coventry City and previously came through Portsmouth’s academy.