Dane Murphy explains why Barnsley and Valerien Ismael are perfect for each other

BARNSLEY chief executive officer Dane Murphy has expressed confidence that head coach Valerien Ismael will be in charge of the club next season.

The outstanding feats of the 45-year-old, who took over last October, in taking the Reds into the Championship play-offs, have firmly marked him out as a managerial name to watch.

The former LASK Linz head coach has been mentioned as a potential candidate for several jobs, including former club Crystal Palace and West Brom.

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But Murphy believes that Ismael – contracted until June 2023 – remains fully committed to the club, while being mindful that the Reds are in a strong position to retain their squad and have another push for the top six in 2021-22.

RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME: Barnsley head coach Valerien Ismael. Picture: Tony Johnson

Murphy told The Yorkshire Post: “We want him here for as long as we can have him. He is more engaged than ever in all aspects of the club.

“He is on holiday with his family, but I am in constant communication with him about what is going on at the club.

“I don’t see any change in Valerien or the stance of the club that he will be coach next year.

“There is always going to be interest after the season we had and calibre of manager he is with the way he is able to lift the group week in week out. It is very appealing and should be to a lot of clubs in and around Europe.

CONFIDENT: Dane Murphy, chief executive of Barnsley. Picture supplied by Barnsley FC

“But right now, I do not see a situation where he is not our head coach in 2021-22.

“I think he knows this is a great place for him. Eventually, at some point, maybe there is another step in his career. But right now, it does not get much better.

“He has full control of his group and they know what to expect from him and he knows what he is going to get out of them.

“Add a few pieces to the group and why can’t we push again for top six or promotion? That is now the expectation we have set after the goal we have achieved. Valerien is the right man for it.”

Meanwhile, Murphy has confirmed that the future of captain Alex Mowatt whose deal expires at the end of June, will be finalised when he returns from a break later this month.

He added: “We’re still confident we can get that across the line. With Alex, it is finding the best situation for him. I am strong in the belief – and I think Valerien is strong in the belief – that Barnsley is the best place for Alex.”

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