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3 variations of Barnsley’s attack Schopp could deploy if they seal deal for Standard Liege striker

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Barnsley look to be closing in on the signing of Standard Liege forward Obbi Oulare, per reports in Belgium.

The 25-year-old was said to be wanted by the Tykes back in the January transfer window, but Oulare rejected the move and instead Barnsley brought in Daryl Dike on loan instead.

The young American proved to be a revelation but he’s now wanted by bigger clubs and a return to the Yorkshire side isn’t happening.

A physical presence is clearly wanted though and they look close to sealing a deal for the 6ft 4in Oulare, who was once on the books of Watford but played just two league games.

With Oulare’s arrival seemingly imminent, lets look at three ways Markus Schopp could fit him into his line-up at Barnsley.

Partnering Woodrow in a 4-4-2

4-4-2 isn’t a formation that Barnsley have played much all too often, and they’d need to add some wingers to their squad to make this work, but they could go really direct next season with Oulare and Woodrow next to each other.

The football probably wouldn’t be pretty, but sometimes being direct is the most effective way of attacking as we found out last season with Valerien Ismael’s style of football.

Gerhard Struber played a 4-4-2 occasionally during his time at Barnsley but Ismael never implemented it – Barnsley fans have probably forgot what actual wingers look like now but a couple of them whipping balls onto Oulare’s head could be the way to go.

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Three up top with Woodrow and Cole

Given how successful the high-pressing 3-4-3 system was last season under Ismael, Barnsley’s powers that be may insist that Schopp sticks with that formation this coming season.

Ismael always played three out-and-out strikers and Barnsley have a lot to choose from when Oulare arrives – they will have the big Belgian, Woodrow, Devante Cole, Carlton Morris, Conor Chaplin, Dominik Frieser and Victor Adeboyejo.

In that formation, Oulare could take over the Daryl Dike role of the physical man in the trio with Woodrow and Cole running off him, but you could even play Chaplin as one of the nippy players that could feed off Oulare’s hold-up play.

Lone striker with Woodrow in behind

Soccer Football – Championship Play-Off Semi Final Second Leg – Swansea City v Barnsley – Liberty Stadium, Swansea, Britain – May 22, 2021 Barnsley’s Cauley Woodrow celebrates scoring their first goal with Callum Brittain Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or “live” services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

Barnsley’s leading scorer for the past few seasons, Woodrow has been known to be able to play in the attacking midfield role despite being a natural out-and-out striker.

He could re-assume that role if Schopp decides he wants to utilise just one striker with Oulare being the furthest forward man – but he’s got a lot of forward players to keep happy if that is the case.

If you look at Schopp’s manager profile on transfermarkt, his most favoured formation at Hartberg is a 4-2-3-1, so this could be the way he’s planning on going although wingers would be needed – unless he utilises the likes of Chaplin and Frieser as forwards cutting in from out wide.


25 years old, UCLan Sports Journalism graduate, Preston North End fan

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: 3 variations of Barnsley’s attack Schopp could deploy if they seal deal for Standard Liege striker

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