BARNSLEY chief Gerhard Struber believes his biggest task is changing the mindset of his confidence-drained players.
“The feeling now is like being hit in the head,” he said after Lee Tomlin struck a last-minute goal which earned Cardiff City a 3-2 home victory over the bottom club.
“I am very frustrated and disappointed. The mindset was not to go on and win the game after they equalised.
“We had control of the game in the first 20 minutes of the second-half, we had the lead, but after the equaliser I saw the mentality of the previous month in my players.
“The mindset was not to go on and win the game, the personality is not to go and get the next goal, many players were thinking it would be difficult.
“This change is my job and responsibility, I need to change the mindset so the players believe they can win, but now it’s only a mentality situation.
“My job now is to help the boys for the next game on Wednesday, we are going in the right direction, we are very close to winning games, it is only a matter of time.”
Cardiff manager Neil Harris believes “magic man” Tomlin has grasped his second chance at the club.
The Bluebirds came from behind twice to continue Harris’s unbeaten start in the role.
It looked as if Barnsley were on course to move off the foot of the table until a late Cardiff fightback, which was completed thanks to Tomlin’s winner in the fifth minute of stoppage time.
“When you’ve got a magic man like Lee Tomlin, you stay in those games, you’ve got players who, in any moment, can win it,” said Harris.
“He’s got the quality to open up a defence with a pass, like for Danny’s goal, or he’s got the quality to hit a ball dropping from the sky on the full into the bottom corner. It’s not just any moment either you’re talking about the 95th minute of a game, when he’s run 12km again, which, last week, was the most he’s ever run in his career. He’s getting those rewards now.”
Conor Chaplin put the Reds ahead but the advantage lasted less than three minutes as the Bluebirds got back on level terms through Aden Flint. Chaplin played a key role again two minutes after half-time when he fired the ball across the goal towards Bamba Diaby. The defender outmuscled Lee Peltier and saw the ball go in off his side for a 2-1 lead.
Danny Ward came off the bench and latched onto Tomlin’s through ball to put Cardiff back on level terms and Barnsley were hit with a sucker punch when Tomlin volleyed home.
Cardiff City: Etheridge, Peltier, Flint, Nelson, Bennett, Bacuna (Vaulks 75), Pack, Mendez-Laing, Tomlin, Hoilett (J Murphy 59), Madine (Ward 65). Unused substitutes: Morrison, Smithies, Paterson, Richards.
Barnsley: Radlinger, J Williams, Diaby, Andersen, B Williams, Halme, Bahre (Oduor 90), Mowatt, Woodrow, Brown (Schmidt 82), Chaplin. Unused substitutes: Dougall, Thomas, Sibbick, Mottley-Henry, Collins.
Referee: P Tierney (Lancashire).