HE may not be too familiar with footballing terminology in the English language yet, but the phrase ‘relegation six-pointer’ is something that is unlikely to be lost upon Barnsley head coach Gerhard Struber.
It promises to be another definitive moment in the Reds’ campaign at The Valley today in the latest of several crunch autumnal and winter appointments for the Oakwell outfit – perhaps the most important.
Victory for Barnsley – whose sole away win this term arrived at nearby Millwall – would cut the gap between themselves and fourth-from-bottom Charlton to a manageable three points.
The prospect of a home success and nine-point buffer for the Addicks, by contrast, is something that the visitors would not wish to countenance.
For Struber, concentrating on performance and remedying the abject defensive performance in the club’s last two games against Portsmouth and Preston, which have drawn scathing criticism from fans, is the primary focus.
Struber, set to hand a league debut to Michael Sollbauer, said: “The boys understood after the (Portsmouth) game what the big problem was.
For me, it is very important that we have a focus and concentration in our game style.Gerhard Struber
“We have had a very good training week and I think it is a very big game for us, but it is not the final game.
“Our aim is to create a very good performance on Saturday and we have prepared the team in the right direction.
“I hope that every single player will come out of their personal comfort zone and gives us all what they can.
“In a big game, we will show it together in good team work.
“For me, it is very important that we have a focus and concentration in our game style.
“If we win, Charlton will be in view of the relegation zone.
“But our aim is more to bring a good performance and win three points and not the consequence of Charlton going down. We must have the right attitude and it is our responsibility.”
Meanwhile, Struber has confirmed that today’s game is likely to arrive too soon for Mike-Steven Bahre following illness.
He said: “He was out for three weeks and now he has had one training week.
“Maybe he is in the squad and I will speak with the physios and doctor about what is best for him.
“I think Saturday is probably a bit early.”