BARNSLEY manager Danny Wilson has praised the impact of young midfield player Brad Abbott, who has kicked on with purpose following an impressive build-up in pre-season.
The teenager is set to line up for the Reds again this afternoon following his debut in last weekend’s 4-1 success over Gillingham at Oakwell, with his sparkling form before the season kicked off marking Wilson’s card in a big way.
The Reds’ chief said: “Brad did so well in the pre-season games, in Italy in particular, and I was delighted with him.
“He was competing against some high quality international players over there.
“We felt if that was what he could produce against bigger and better players in the football world, he might hold his own in League One.
“His attitude has been absolutely brilliant. From someone who was not in the frame at all last year, along with one or two others for whatever circumstances, he has come to the fore.
“He is really pushing himself forward and full credit to the lad.
“He got the recognition last Saturday and did himself the power of good by having a good game.
“Young players mature very quickly these days, but you have to in football.
“You can play Under-21 games as much as you like, but you don’t have the same impact as you do in league football.”
The Reds head to the Somerset venue where they triumphed emphatically, 4-1, in the Spring, but Wilson insists that will not give them a psychological edge today.
He added: “We had a very hard encounter with them last season, and I take away the scoreline completely.
“The 90 minutes was very much a case of us both having a lot of the play and it will be the same this season.”