The most exciting team to watch in League One so far this season has been Barnsley.

In last week’s home clash with Luton, Daniel Stendel’s side played without a recognized centre-forward due to the unavailability of striker Kieffer Moore – that would limit them right, right?

Surprisingly, they were great value for a 3-2 win without their seven-goal man because, rather than have players in pre-ordained positions, their midfield and attack consisted of a cluster of six players who were all given the licence to press quickly and roam.

We see Mike-Steven Bahre and Jacob Brown make selfless runs to occupy defenders and allow the likes of Cameron McGeehan, Brad Potts and George Moncur to break into goalscoring positions.

Although Moore could be available for this match, Stendel would be hard-pushed to tamper with the system.

Full-backs Dimitri Cavare and Daniel Pinillos – the latter expected to return to the line-up this week – are quick to second balls, while left-footed technician Alex Mowatt pulls strings from deep.

Should opposing teams manage to deny space for their midfielders, full-backs and forwards, Barnsley even have a centre-back in Ethan Pinnock who can switch play with unerring ease.

The South Yorkshire outfit should therefore unlock a Charlton side that have conceded nine goals in their last three games, including a 5-3 loss at Scunthorpe.

It might not be the greatest coincidence that each of those matches had come without centre-back Patrick Bauer, who had hitherto been a calming influence on the Addicks back-line but now has a knee injury that rules him out for six weeks.

Lewis Page, a steady left-back, is sidelined for a similar timeframe with a hip injury and the alternatives are not especially convincing.

In Bauer’s absence, Naby Sarr can impose his physical presence in the opposing penalty area – as we saw in the 2-2 draw at Luton – but his lack of positional awareness is problematic.

Equally, Anfernee Dijksteel has been handed the left-back role with no natural alternatives; the young Dutchman can be caught out at times, so the visitors must be anticipating a great opportunity to not only win but potentially knock in a few goals.

For our best bet, therefore, we’re taking the 12/5 available on Barnsley winning at the Valley with Over 2.5 goals scored.


Barnsley to win and over 2.5 goals

Read Gabriel Sutton’s League Two Gameweek 14 Betting Preview here!

Odds are correct at the time of posting

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