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Barnsley duo missed a big opportunity to prove a point at the weekend

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This article is part of Football League World’s ‘Player View’ series. This content strand is where put ourselves in the shoes of a given player and offer an opinion-based outlook on the perspective on the situation at hand…

Barnsley’s clash against Leeds United last Sunday was always going to be an emotional affair for a number of the club’s players due to their previous connections with Marcelo Bielsa’s side.

Whilst Alex Mowatt enjoyed a fruitful spell at Elland Road before making the switch to the Tykes, the same cannot be said for Mallik Wilks or Aapo Halme.

Wilks, who is a product of the Whites’ youth academy, was hoping that his stunning performances for Doncaster Rovers last season would have been enough to force himself into contention for a starting role under Bielsa this season.

Although the winger was unable to secure promotion whilst on loan at Rovers, he did manage to provide 28 goal contributions in all competitions at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Yet with Bielsa making it clear that he was not part of the club’s plans for the future, Wilks decided to join Barnsley on a four-year deal in July (via BBC Sport).

Meanwhile, Halme also opted to make the switch to Oakwell following a frustrating spell that resulted in him making just five appearances for Leeds during the previous campaign.

With both players keen to prove a point against their former side last weekend, Barnsley made a bright start to last Saturday’s clash.

Wilks had two opportunities to open the scoring in the first-half yet, ultimately, lacked conviction in-front of goal.

The winger then missed another chance following the break as he fired into the side netting with the goal gaping.

Leeds, who dominated possession throughout the clash, eventually made Wilks rue his poor finishing as Eddie Nketiah fired home from close range in the 84th minute.

Halme then tarnished what had been an encouraging performance in the heart of Barnsley’s defence by committing a foul on Nketiah in the penalty area, which resulted in Mateusz Klich adding a second for the visitors.

With the Tykes unable to respond to this setback, they slumped to their fourth league defeat of the season.

Whereas Halme and Wilks did show signs of promise during this clash, a lack of composure from both players ultimately saw them squander the chance to get revenge on their former side.

They will now have to dust themselves down before they head to the City Ground on Saturday to face in-form Nottingham Forest in the Championship.


Freelance writer for Football League World. Previously worked for 90min & GiveMeSport.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Barnsley duo missed a big opportunity to prove a point at the weekend

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