Portsmouth and Sunderland told: Barnsley points more important than games in hand
Barnsley would rather have points on the board than games in hand after the League One promotion race gathered pace with Sunderland’s victory over Accrington.
That’s according to assistant head coach Dale Tonge ahead of the Tykes’ game at Burton on Saturday.
Jack Ross’ Black Cats closed the gap on second-placed Barnsley following their convincing win at the Crown Ground on Wednesday night – three days after their Checkatrade Trophy final shootout defeat against Pompey.
The Wearsiders also leapfrogged the Blues in the table as they play catch-up in the number of games played this season.
The win leaves Sunderland two points adrift of Barnsley (79) but with two games in hand on the team directly above them in the table.
Meanwhile, the Blues are five points off the Tykes with one less match played
That fixtures, against Peterborough at home, will be played on Tuesday, April 30.
In the mean time, Kenny Jackett’s side face Wycombe away this Saturday, while Sunderland travel to Rochdale.
Both automatic promotion-chasers will be keen to keep the pressure on Barnsley, who are currently 20 games unbeaten in League One.
However, Tonge is of the opinion that it’s points already on the bag that matter most, not what could potentially come from any games in hand.
Speaking to The Yorkshire Post, he said: ‘You would always take the points and they (Sunderland and Pompey) have still to get those points and have tough games to come.
‘They (Sunderland) did their job last night, which is what we are expecting them to do.
‘It is even more important for us to do our job.
‘It is up to us to get maximum points as much as we can over the next six games.’
Sunderland’s two game in hand on Barnsley are against Burton (home – April 9) and Fleetwood (away – April 30).