Will Hondermarck offers an insight into the Michael Duff regime at Barnsley FC
WILL HONDERMARCK has offered a revealing insight in the regime of recently-appointed Barnsley head coach Michael Duff - and it is a favourable one.
The Reds players returned to training last week and are currently being put through their paces by Duff and his coaching staff as they build up their fitness levels and establish working relationships with the Oakwell supremo ahead of the big kick-off at the end of July.
While it is early days in terms of the establishing of relationships between Duff and his players, Hondermarck - who this week signed a new two-year deal - says that the initial impressions have been very encouraging.
The Irish youth international said: "To describe him fully is a bit tough right now as on a personal level, we haven't known him for a lot of time.
"But from the things I can say that I have seen, he seems very organised and knows what he wants from players and staff.
"That is something that is very important to us players in terms of knowing what he demands of us, whether that be in training or games or off the pitch.
"It is something he is very keen on and has made very clear. He is clearly someone who is organised, who has a very set of core values who demands off the players."
Duff's preference for a three-man backline with wing-backs could potentially offer a window of opportunity down the flanks in 2022-23 for Hondermarck, who made ten appearances for the club last term.
The former Norwich City player, who joined the Reds last September following a successful trial, said: "It has been a very short amount of time since he has been here. It's been two weeks in pre-season.
"But I think he is going to play a similar system to last year with three at the back and wing-backs and obviously the wing-back role was the role I was playing at the end of last season.
"Coming into it this season, it is one he uses a lot and is very keen on the wing-back role. So that's one that I have been looking at over pre-season."
Despite the potential to feature at wing-back, Hondermarck is wise to the notion that his versatility and ability to play in other positions is likely to be equally - if not more - important in his future development.
"At a young age, you don't want to be set on one position," he added.
"For the rest of your career, you always have to be open-minded to develop in different areas. I definitely think with my pace, power and breaking lines make me very suited to either the 'eight' role or a wing-back role where I can use that to break and drive through teams.
"They are the two positions I have been focused on. But I have never tried to narrow myself down to one single position because a lot goes on in football and you have to be open at a young age where there's so much development to do."