Daryl Dike helping Barnsley FC become news at home and in the United States

FEW English sides can match the narrative of Barnsley’s story over the past year.

A few minutes away from dropping out of the Championship last July, the Reds are now three games away from the Premier League following a remarkable transformation in fortunes in the space of under a year.

Interest in one of the most uplifting tales in football in recent times is growing, with Barnsley’s accomplishments having resonated not just in this country, but also overseas.

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Barnsley are part of majority shareholders Pacific Media Group’s portfolio of clubs which also include Danish club Esberg, French outfit Nancy, Belgian side Oostende in Belgium and Thun, from Switzerland.

Barnsley CEO Dane Murphy.

Alongside their outstanding exploits, the presence of one of the hottest young prospects in MLS football in American striker Daryl Dike has raised their profile across the other side of the Atlantic among ‘soccer’ fans in particular.

After Saturday’s final game of the regular season at home to Norwich City, attention will switch to the play-offs, with the Reds poised to play the first leg of their semi-final at Oakwell on Monday, May 17 - with between four to five thousand fans potentially in attendance along with a watching audience across the country.

It will showcase Barnsley in the national spotlight following a stellar 2020-21, which has surpassed the expectations of co-owners Paul Conway and Chien Lee.

Whatever happens, it has been a year to savour at Oakwell, with all and sundry naturally hopeful that it ends in glory at Wembley later this month.

Reds CEO Dane Murphy said: “That is something we have to take from this year. The profile of the club - both internally and externally and aboard - has been raised and the brand of Barnsley has taken a step forward.

“It has not been a fluke and we feel that no matter what happens at the end of the season, we can take a next step and very successful chapter.

“We have international appeal with an international squad, coach and owners and it is because we have done so well. We have gained attraction from people domestically and abroad and it is helped with the uplift of the club. There are paths we can go down with certain ideas.

"It (promotion) is the dream and to be top of the pedestal. But we are trying to keep our feet on the ground. The top division in the country is what everyone in the world wants, player, staff, sporting director or recruiting or marketing team. There are so many different revenue streams.”