IN MOST successful relegation fights, footballing sophistication usually does not have too much of a place.
When you are down among the dead men and results are not pretty, then flowing football takes a back seat.
To that end, towering Barnsley striker Kieffer Moore believes that the direct route is the Reds’ best hope for salvation.
Wounds are still festering following Tuesday night’s bitter 2-1 home defeat to Burton, with the second-from-bottom Reds having now tasted victory just once in their past 18 matches in all competitions, with a change of tack surely necessary if they are to retain their Championship status.
Substitute Moore, who claimed to have got a touch to Daniel Pinillos’ ‘goal’ which gave the hosts hope late on, made his case for a starting spot by showing his prowess in the air as Barnsley went long for spells of the second half against the Brewers
With some justification, the £750,000 January arrival from Ipswich Town passionately believes that it is the way forward, certainly to get the best out of him as it definitely showed during his golden first half of the season on loan at South Yorkshire neighbours Rotherham United. Moore, whose hurt was plain for all to see after a crushing loss for the Reds in Jose Morais’ first game in charge, said: “In the second half, we went a bit more direct and I think that is what we need to put in our game. I don’t think we are direct enough and don’t ask enough of our opponents’ goalkeeper or defence.
I have watched many games and as a team, I don’t think we cross the ball a lot. But as you could see at the end of the Burton game, we just piled it on top of them and they couldn’t deal with it.Kieffer Moore
“It is something I thrive on. I am not going to say I am a complete direct player. But I have got most of my goals from direct play. I think that will help us in a way.
“I have watched many games and, as a team, I don’t think we cross the ball a lot. But as you could see at the end of the Burton game, we just piled it on top of them and they couldn’t deal with it.
“It is a case of doing that, I think. But it is down to the gaffer and how he wants to play. But I am sure he will see from this game that it is an opportunity that could work for us.”
Moore and fellow subs Brad Potts and Mamadou Thiam all made a case for involvement in Saturday’s vital game against another relegation rival in Birmingham, themselves reeling after a 5-0 drubbing at Brentford.
With Hull City, who Barnsley visit on Tuesday, also far from convincing in the defensive stakes in their own midweek loss to Middlesbrough, the Reds have potential avenues to exploit, with the directness of Moore and Oli McBurnie, allied to the pace and energy of Potts and Thiam currently looking to be their best hope.
Pulling no punches, Moore said: “We just need to go and get results now. We still have 42 points to play for and a goal of a certain amount of points to hit and I believe we will hit it.
“It is about the next game now and if we alter a couple of things, and maybe go a bit more direct and ask more of the opponent, then I am sure we will get results.
“It is a dogfight and we need to grind out points and can maybe do it that way.”
On staking his own claim, he added: “I am not really thinking about that. I want to play, but at the end of the day, I personally don’t want to get relegated.
“If I play, great. If I don’t, I hope that the person in front of me does well and scores the goals. Or if not, I do. We just need to get the results now.”