The number of weeks Barnsley have spent in the League One automatic promotion places ahead of crunch Sunderland clash

Until now, Barnsley had spent the majority of the season chasing the automatic promotion places - but how long have they actually spent in League One's top two?

Barnsley manager Daniel Stendel

The Tykes are seeking an immediate return to the Championship and a victory in tomorrow's promotion showdown with Sunderland could undoubtedly set them on their way.

And while they occupy an automatic promotion spot at this present moment, Daniel Stendel's men had barely featured in the top two this term.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

With that in mind, we've crunched the numbers to see where The Reds have spent the majority of the 2018/19 season.

Barnsley were promoted via the League One playoffs in 2017

And as shown in the graphic below, Barnsley have spent just nine weeks of the season in the automatics, seven of which has followed in the last seven match days.

In fact, it is arguably The Tykes' only credible run in the top two given the previous two weeks at the top followed in the opening weeks of the term when the table was still taking shape.

For most of the season, Stendel's men have become accustomed to 3rd spot, spending 10 weeks there - their most out of any position.

Closely followed is 5th spot, the position in which Barnsley have spent nine weeks of the campaign in.

Barnsley's league positions this season

The lowest The Reds has fallen is 7th, though swiftly jumped back into the top six, one week later with a 1-0 win at Blackpool in December.

A win at Oakwell against the Black Cats and The Tykes will open up a crucial seven-point gap on their third-placed opponents.

Defeat, however, and Barnsley's advantage will be cut to one, with Jack Ross' side possessing a game in-hand.