‘Full blooded and competitive’ - Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom relieved to edge out Rotherham

Rotherham's Paul Warne.
Rotherham's Paul Warne.
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BARNSLEY boss Paul Heckingbottom said his team’s quality came through “when it mattered” to edge out Rotherham United in a tense South Yorkshire derby.

Adam Armstrong’s 70th-minute strike earned the three points in a 1-0 win for Barnsley which sends them to within a point of the top six.

Barnsley head coach Paul Heckingbottom.

Barnsley head coach Paul Heckingbottom.

The Newcastle loanee coolly finished from eight yards after a defence-splitting pass from Ryan Kent.

Afterwards, Rotherham’s New York Stadium was evacuated around 15 minutes after the final whistle of today’s South Yorkshire derby due to a ‘suspect package’ being spotted in the West Stand.

Players and club officials from the Millers and Reds were forced to wait outside of the stadium while the police investigated.

After a wait of around 15 minutes, the all-clear was sounded with a false alarm declared and players and officials returned into the stadium.

Reflecting on the game, Heckingbottom, who lost star players Conor Hourihane and James Bree, was happy that his side were able to produce the quality moments.

“I’m pleased to come out with the three points,” he said. “I thought it was exactly like a derby, not a huge amount of quality but a lot of endeavour, full-blooded and really competitive. Rotherham tried to make it difficult for us and we had to really match what they threw at us.

“There were two moments of quality from us and they mattered. One was Kenty playing the ball through the full-back for Arma and the second was him tucking it away, which I thought was a fantastic finish.

“Then as the match worn on we got more and more on top, then finished the game the stronger.

“The nature of the game and how combative it was with Rotherham imposing their direct style on us, the front two were both feeding off scraps.”

Paul Warne saw his side lose a 17th game of the season and knew there was not a lot in it.

“It was a tight game. I thought the lads went toe-to-toe with them but we need to score when we are on top.

“The game is decided by the smallest of margins. After 60 minutes I thought it had 0-0 written all over it. Obviously that wasn’t the case. I don’t think we played our best football and I don’t think Barnsley did either, the game could have gone either way.

“I really like Barnsley, they have got pace throughout the team. Unfortunately we didn’t create a chance as clear cut as theirs.

“It’s not like I have got Lady Luck with me at the minute. The lads are giving me everything, we lost two to injury and Richard Wood was like the walking dead at the end.

“I’m disappointed but I have got a bit of pride that the lads have given me all that they have got.”