Tykes can call on past experiences to help them beat the drop

Former Barnsley manager Simon Davey.
Former Barnsley manager Simon Davey.
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BARNSLEY’S justified reputation as ‘great escape’ specialists has been admired over the years, but their latest mission comfortably represents their most formidable challenge yet.

Their current total of 23 points is eight shy of their haul from 30 matches last term, with the second half of 2012-13 one to cherish for the club’s supporters.

A remarkable run saw the Oakwell outfit amass 34 points from New Year’s Day onwards, a total surpassed only by two other Championship clubs in Brighton and Hove Albion and Watford.

Yet it still required a point from their final-day showdown with county rivals Huddersfield Town to rubber-stamp safety, such was the competitive nature of the division last year with the fall guys ultimately proving to be Peterborough United.

Here is a run-down of some of Barnsley’s other successful battles against the drop.

2011-12: The Reds enter into freefall from New Year’s Day following the sale of Ricardo Vaz Te and a season-ending injury to Jacob Butterfield.

Keith Hill’s side pick up just nine points from their last 16 games, but their total of 48 points is enough to see them finish 21st – although it is only Portsmouth’s 10-point deduction for entering administration which saves them.

To read Danny Wilson’s thoughts on Barnsley’s chances of beating the drop click HERE

2009-10: Barnsley’s form tails off in the closing months of the campaign, with Mark Robins’s side finishing 18th, seven points above relegated rivals Sheffield Wednesday.

2008-09: The Reds stave off relegation and finish 20th after a run of 20 points in their last 16 games, with their fate unsure going into their final-day clash with Plymouth at Home Park. They secure a 2-1 win, with Norwich relegated after a 4-2 loss at Charlton.

2007-08: Barnsley finish the season in 18th spot with 55 points, just three points above the drop zone, with Leicester the ones to go down from a group of teams who were all battling for their safety.

2006-07: In their first season back in the Championship since 2001-02, the Reds – under the management of Andy Ritchie and then Simon Davey – finish fifth from bottom in 20th spot. Three victories in their last five matches, with key wins coming against Birmingham City, Southend United and Crystal Palace, help them pull away from trouble.