BARNSLEY assistant head coach Andreas Winkler is calling on some leaders to emerge in the likely absence of several key players in tomorrow’s home game with Luton Town.
The fourth-placed Reds, who could temporarily move up to second position in League One if they triumph in the televised lunch-time fixture, have a number of selection issues ahead of the encounter with the play-off chasing Hatters.
Definitely missing are captain Adam Davies and influential midfielder Kenny Dougall, who are on international duty with Wales and Australia respectively.
Top scorer Kieffer Moore is a major doubt after coming off with an ankle ligament injury in last weekend’s fine 4-0 victory at Peterborough United and the Reds’ concerns do not end there.
Left-back Daniel Pinillos is being monitored following his return to training yesterday, while Zeki Fryers, Lloyd Isgrove and Cauley Woodrow are definitely ruled out.
Ben Walton will deputise in goal for Davies, while the Reds’ biggest issue surrounds the replacement for Dougall, with Jared Bird and Cameron McGeehan vying for a start.
The absence of Moore would also leave the Reds short of senior experience up front with either one or two rookies in Jacob Brown and Victor Adeboyejo set to fill the breach.
But despite a number of pressing issues Winkler has belief in the Reds’ squad.
Winkler said: “I will be excited who can fit into this (leadership) role. Maybe not only one, but more players can show they can be a little bit more like leaders in their performance.
“We have a bright squad and we are happy. We would be happier if Kenny Dougall and Davo are here and we do not have as many injuries, but we are quite confident with the other players.
“We will trust any of the players if they play on Saturday.”
The Reds may be sweating regarding the fitness of Moore, but there is more positive news regarding Woodrow, yet to feature following his deadline-day arrival from Fulham due to a problematic muscle injury.
The forward is stepping up his fitness work and Winkler has revealed that he is pushing to be involved in next weekend’s game at Charlton.
Winkler added: “He has a great attitude. Every day I have seen him running and (also) on the pitch one day.
“He is a good player and I am happy that he has signed here. I will be very excited to see him in training next week.”